March 21 2018

Kohli hails 'special' Pandya after series sweep

March 21 2018, 12:45 | Irvin Gilbert

Ravichandran Ashwin grabbed four wickets on Monday as India crushed Sri Lanka by an innings and 171 runs inside three days to complete their first three-Test series sweep on foreign soil.

Kuldeep, another Indian rookie, then flattened the Sri Lankan batting in the hosts' first innings, returning impressive figures of 4-40 in just his second Test.

Crediting India for the comprehensive win, Sri Lanka skipper Dinesh Chandimal said: "You can't control the toss, but this was a tough series".

At the break, Chandimal was given company by Niroshan Dickwella (14) as the hosts trailed by 426 runs.

The last day once more demonstrated how, India have developed as a bowling force - of the nine wickets to fall on the day as Sri Lanka folded for a paltry 181 in their second innings - seven were divided between Ravi Ashwin (4/68) and Mohammed Shami (3/32).

Sandakan was the pick of the Sri Lanka bowlers, capturing five for 132, his first test five-wicket haul.

Kohli & Co. post an innings & 171 run win against Sri Lanka to achieve their first 3-0 whitewash in an away series. India won the Test series 3-0.

Great to be a part of this team, massive team effort for winning this series.

In its first inning, India had scored 487 runs with the help of a brilliant century by Shikhar Dhawan (119 runs) and Hardik Pandya (108 runs).

Chandimal must look to restrict India under 400, and for that it is necessary that he puts men around the bat while using the spinners from both ends.

"They played some really good cricket in the last six months. That's the only way you can be ruthless. we like to be proactive rather than reactive", said Kohli. Building on Dhawan and Pujara's massive tons, the Indians amassed 600 and it has been all downhill for Sri Lanka ever since. His majestic performance, athleticism and energy was on display in the field as the team outplayed their neighbours in all departments of the game. Two of India's victories came by an innings, and the other - in Galle - was their biggest victory in terms of runs.

Resuming the second day at 329/6, India wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha (16), who was batting with Pandya, failed to respond to the pressure situation and was dismissed by Vishwa Fernando early. "We have age on our side and we have an opportunity to play together for five, six years for the country", the 28-year-old added. "I'm alright with where the team needs me to bat".

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