Virat Kohli ton helps India set 550-run target against Sri Lanka

Sunday, 30 Jul, 2017

Indian captain Virat Kohli celebrates after scoring a century during the fourth day of the first Test against Sri Lanka.

India swept to a 1-0 lead in the three-match Test series against Sri Lanka after they cruised to a comfortable 304-run win in the first Test at Galle.

Dimuth Karunaratne remained the top scorer for the home side with his 97 runs knock.

"Last time (2015) we should have won and it was really denting as far as our confidence is concerned". "I said before the game too that this pitch will help the batsmen a lot". We are a better team than that. K.L. Rahul is obviously a champion player, so we will have to eventually take a call on who plays in the next Test and I am sure the third guy will understand.

While the 23-year-old's role with the ball was relatively limited, as illustrated by match figures of 1-34 from 10 overs, Kohli is confident Pandya can make a significant impact in Tests and offer the balance Stokes provides to England.

With a 309-run lead in hand, India got off to a rocky start as opener Shikhar Dhawan was removed by Dilruwan for 14.

Both the centurians of first innings Shikhar Dhawan and Chateshwar Pujara fell cheaply.

The second Test will be played from Thursday in Colombo. I have gone through my ups and downs, and that is a long long time back. India had smartly advanced to 189/2 before Mukund (81) wasted an opportunity to score a maiden Test ton and a review to call it a day in Galle.

The hosts will definitely have to put in a much-improved performance if they are to get the better of a strong Indian line-up in this series.

Beginning a new era after the much talked about appointment of Ravi Shastri as the head coach, the pressure was on the new boss and Virat Kohli to produce a positive result. They, however, were expected to give a fight, and take the game to the final day.

It needed a smart review from India to break the partnership as Mendis (36, 71b, 3x4) nicked one off Jadeja, with Angelo Mathews (2, 10b) then gifting his wicket away with a disgusting shot. "All bases were covered nicely", said Virat Kohli after the match.

Abhinav is not particularly partial to spinners or fast bowlers, which is unusual but not rare for an opening batsman, but it was clear that this innings was not going to be one where he poked and prodded nervously, batting for survival or even his place in the team. Herath himself his hoping to be fit for the second Test that begins at the SSC on August 3.