A buttered-finger India paid a heavy price for a sloppy fielding display to allow Sri Lanka to clinch the first Twenty20 international with a comfortable 29-run run victory and take a 1-0 lead in the two-match series in Nagpur on Wednesday.
The visitors first rattled up an imposing 215 for five riding on captain Kumar Sangakkara's blistering 37-ball 78 before restricting the hosts to 186 for nine in a high-scoring contest.
The Indians dropped as many as five catches, missed a couple of run out chances and were generally pathetic with the ground fielding to allow the islanders to pile up a huge total on a good batting track at the VCA stadium in Jamtha.
Apart from Sangakkara's assault, Chamara Kapudegera (47 off 20 balls), Tillakaratne Dilshan (34) and Sanath Jayasuriya (26) were the other notable scorers for the Sri Lankans.
The home team had a daunting task at hand to chase down the total but only Gautam Gambhir (55) could manage a substantial score.
The two teams will now travel to Mohali for the second Twenty20 international on Saturday.
Required to score at a stiff asking rate of 10.80, the Indians needed an explosive start by their crack opening pair of Virender Sehwag and Gambhir.