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India vs Sri Lanka: Virat Kohli and co. shine as practice match ends in draw

India’s practice match against Sri Lanka Board President’s XI ended in a draw, but the visitors got plenty of batting practice before the First Test at Galle.

india vs sri lanka 2017 Updated: Jul 22, 2017 16:52 IST
India vs Sri Lanka,India national cricket team,Sri Lanka national cricket team
Indian captain Virat Kohli top scored for India with 53. (AFP)

Indian cricket team’s practice match against Sri Lanka Board President’s XI ended in a draw, but it was mission accomplished for Virat Kohli’s men. All the batsmen got significant time out in the middle to stake a claim for a spot in the final XI. Kohli top scored for the visitors with 53 and Tharindu Kaushal was the most successful of the bowlers with figures of 2-81. (HIGHLIGHTS)

Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane resumed batting on 30 and 34, respectively. It was Kohli who first took the game to the hosts at first as he smashed Lahiru Gamage for consecutive boundaries in the third over of the day. Kohli went on to bring up his half century with another boundary.

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Ajinkya Rahane was the more composed of the two batsmen. Whilst he didn’t look to play flashy shots, the Mumbaikar brought up a respectable score of 40 through some good running between the wickets. Rahane retired along with the skipper, bringing Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma to the crease.

The two have regularly opened for India in limited overs cricket, and it didn’t take too long for them to get going. Dhawan hit three boundaries early in the innings as Rohit took his time to settle in.

With Dhawan scoring freely, Rohit was content to just rotate the strike. But once he had his eye in, he too looked to free his arms and hit a number of fours to compliment his partner. Rohit Sharma even struck two sixes later on and the two batted on until lunch.

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In the post-lunch session, Hardik Pandya and Wriddhiman Saha came out to bat. Pandya showed intent early and hit Kaushal for a boundary. However, he ended up losing his wicket in the very same over.

This didn’t deter Saha, who was joined in the middle by Ravindra Jadeja. After a slow start to their partnership, Saha broke the shackles with a six off Kaushal. Jadeja hit a boundary in the next over and the two began to score more freely, with Saha once again hitting Kaushal over the ropes.

However, the game came to an end when Ravindra Jadeja was stumped off Kaushal’s bowling. India declared at 312/9, after which the match was ended in a draw.

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Given how well the squad performed in this game, Virat Kohli and new head coach Ravi Shastri have a job on their hands to select the playing XI for the first Test in Galle.

First Published: Jul 22, 2017 16:34 IST