India has beat Sri Lanka by 168 years in the fourth one-day international match at the R. Premadasa stadium.
While India bowlers definitely did amazing task of restricting the Sri Lankan side to just 207 all-out, part of the credit for the win goes to Skipper Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma who both hit quickfire centuries – 219 runs for the second wicket off just 168 balls. The two centuries helped India post an imposing 375-5 after the visitors elected to bat first.
Sri Lanka barely put up a fight after losing four early wickets for 68 runs, folding up for 207 in 42.4 overs to concede a 4-0 lead to India in the five-match series. Angelo Mathews top-scored with 70 in an otherwise lacklustre show by the beleaguered hosts.
Debutant Shardul Thakur gave India the first breakthrough when he had opener Niroshan Dickwella caught by Mahendra Singh Dhoni, playing his 300th one-day-international. The batsman was given not-out by the on-field umpire but India decided to review the decision and TV replays showed the ball had brushed the bat.
Sri Lanka could never really recover from the early blow and failed to build the partnerships which were needed to chase the imposing target.
The highlight of the game was the partnership between Kohli and Sharma. Kohli hit 17 fours and two sixes in his enthralling innings. Sharma (104) hammered 11 fours and three sixes in an equally entertaining innings off 88 balls. Sharma, who hit back-to-back hundreds, now has 13 three- figure scores in the 50-over format.
The Indian batsmen made merry as Manish Pandey utilized his first chance of the series to the fullest with an unbeaten 50 off 42 balls while skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni remained undefeated one short of a half-century score in his 300th ODI appearance. Incidentally, Dhoni got a single off the penultimate delivery of the 50th over as he remained stranded on 49 not out — one short of what could have been his 100th international half-century.