So that's it from us for the Test series. Sri Lanka would be glad with the final 1-0 result, especially after being whitewashed at home by India earlier this year. All the pre-series talks too, revolved around the hosts steamrolling them. But they have done really well to lose just the solitary game in the series. That's not all from this Sri Lankan tour, though. It is time for the colored-clothing games to take precedence now. The ODI series begins first. Will the tourists put up a good show then? Or will the home side continue its recent domination? The first game of the series will be played in Dharamsala on the 10th of December, 2017. Join us then at 1130 local time (0600 GMT). We look forward to your company for that game. Till then, adios, take care!
VIRAT KOHLI, the Indian captain is adjudged as the MAN OF THE MATCH as well as the MAN OF THE SERIES for his stellar run in the tournament. He admits that it was a good series for him personally. Adds that he was hitting the ball well and it was a revelation for him that he could play Tests like he does in the limited overs games. When he wasn't the captain of the side, milestones drove him, but now he realizes that it is about the team. He works on things that benefit the team. States that the team looks upon Rohit Sharma as a game-changer and someone who can bat in the lower middle order. Is glad that the batsman grabbed his chance in the couple of games that he played in. He is happy with how his batsmen have shaped up and scored runs. It isn't a satisfying feeling to not bowl out the opposition and finish the game, he adds. Yet he credits the opposition and feels that their batters applied themselves well and sailed to safety. Feels that the pitch also had its role there as it got tired towards the end. Reckons that if they would have got more runs in the first innings, things could have been different but quickly adds that this game isn't about ifs. Asserts they need to work on their slip fielding. About not having Rahane in the slip cordon, he feels that as the former has been fielding at gully since his initial days, the team trusts him there. Adds that position is the most difficult one to perfect your reflexes. Mentions that they have recognized the personnel who will man the slip cordon and will continue to work on that. Feels that it is a welcome break for him. Adds that last time he took rest it was difficult to cope up but now his body needs it as the past couple of years have taken a toll on him and he can't play with low energy levels. Ends saying this is a perfect time to rest and get refreshed before the series against South Africa.
DINESH CHANDIMAL, the Sri Lankan skipper, says it was a really good series apart from the second game where they didn't do well. Adds that they learnt lessons from the last series and did well here. Lauds his team management and players for their contribution. He states that the entire side looks up to Rangana Herath and Angelo Mathews and when either of them does well, the team generally fares well. Credits Dhananjaya de Silva and Roshen Silva to have battled out through tough conditions. Adds that Niroshan Dickwella played well too. He asserts that before coming on this tour, he worked hard on his technique with his batting coach and is happy that it paid off. Reckons in Sri Lanka they aren't used to such pollution and hence they struggled on the first two days here. But his message to the team was to forget about that and play the game. Adds that the weather today is a fantastic one and it feels like it is back home. Evokes cheers from the crowd as he thanks them for their support. Ends by wishing India the best for the South African tour.
Well, this wasn't the presentation. It was Sanjay Manjrekar catching up with the last Sri Lankan pair that was at the crease at the time of the match being called off. Presentation coming up...
Roshen Silva agrees that he was under pressure in the first innings. His aim was to impress the selectors and he thinks he has done that. Adds that the opposition bowlers were tough to face and are of good quality. His thought process was of attacking the spinners and putting them on the back foot. He had a talk with Dickwella when the latter walked out to bat and decided that they will play their normal game. About coming good in this innings, he states that it wasn't easy and their batting coach said that if you score runs here the whole world will rate you high. He was confident of his performance as he had done well with the A team and also in First-Class cricket. Ends saying that he wants to do well henceforth and grab his chances.
Niroshan Dickwella says that there was a rough available for Jadeja to bowl at and Ashwin was bowling well. States that he was playing his normal game. On asking about the batters' intent, he mentions that they were planning to chase this down if they would have got partnerships. Asserts that Dhananjaya de Silva's injury didn't help their cause. Adds further that if the batsman hadn't been injured, they would have still gone for the target. Opines that it wasn't a normal Day 5 track as there was a flat patch in the middle although rough patches were there outside the stumps towards the corner of the surface.
So, what went wrong for a side that was touted to just blow the opposition away? Maybe that's for some other time to introspect. For now, let's view at some stats. Sri Lanka have exceeded expectations and have registered the HIGHEST FOURTH INNINGS SCORE BY A VISITING TEAM IN INDIA. They narrowly missed out being the first visiting side to score 300 in the fourth innings in India. For a side that was weak on batting coming here, this is a commendable effort. From the hosts' point of view, Virat Kohli has EQUALED the record for MOST CONSECUTIVE TEST SERIES WINS - nine - joint with Australia. Time for the interviews now.
India were on the money during the fading moments of Day 4. They were successful in picking up 3 wickets to end the day, raising hopes of another batting collapse from Sri Lanka. However, the final day saw a different touring side turn out with the bat. Even after losing Mathews early, the middle order held fort to avoid handing the game and the series in a platter to the hosts. That the pitch didn't help the bowlers much aided their cause. It wasn't a chanceless save though. There was a wicket off a no ball and a missed stumping chance which helped the batters keep the bowlers at bay.
Sri Lanka were helped by the 181-run partnership between Angelo Mathews and their skipper Dinesh Chandimal. Both the experienced players notched up their respective tons - the latter going to get to his best Test score. Although it never changed the tide they were 163 runs behind the Indians at the halfway stage. All the home side bowlers chipped in with useful timely scalps to peg the Lankans back. However, they could have had more in their pocket for much less, if the slip cordon held the catches that came their way. In reply, the hosts came out with a positive intent. Dhawan, Kohli and Rohit scored breezy fifties while Pujara missed his by a run. The quick 90-run stand between the Indian captain and the ODI vice-captain helped them set a target of 410 for the opposition.
The first couple of days belonged to India, where we witnessed a big hundred from Vijay and a double hundred from Virat Kohli. Their 283-run stand helped them get to a massive 536/7 which could have been more if not for an unwonted declaration - not because of the situation of the game but because of the environmental conditions which the visitors found tough to handle. The Sri Lankan players were seen wearing masks while fielding while few of them were also seen throwing up on the field. Among all these, Sandakan, playing his first game of the series returned with a 4-fer.
Sri Lanka would be very pleased with their batting today. They will be happy to have escaped with a draw after being behind the 8-ball after the first couple of days. This will surely be a morale boosting result for them. The way Dhananjaya de Silva went about with his task made the visitors believe that they can bat out time and the following batters in Chandimal, Silva and Dickwella did exactly that. The Indian bowlers gave it their all, yet the effort didn't translate into a favorable result for them.
Dickwella walks down to the non-striker's end. It at first seems that it is some sort of a time-wasting tactic. Well, hold on! The batsmen are asking the dressing room about calling off the game... And the signal from the dressing room comes in as affirmative! So it has ended in a DRAW. Customary handshakes all around.
Ravichandran Ashwin to Niroshan Dickwella
No, it won't be a maiden! Dickwella punches it through covers for a single.
Dickwella blocks it from the crease.
BindaasBunty - Maybe bad light could be the reason behind Shami not being brought into the attack. @BindaasBunty - If that is the case, the match would rather be called off than carrying on for no reason.
Swept away towards square leg.
Ashwin bowls it outside off, Dickwella slashes it aerially towards point. Shouts of catch it follow but the ball falls well short of the fielder.
ND has played it to the point region.
Dickwella tries to sweep yet again but misses.
Ravindra Jadeja to Roshen Silva
Silva comes down the track and blocks.