Shikhar Dhawan smashed a career-best 190 on his Test comeback to lead a brilliant Indian batting assault on the opening day of the first Test against Sri Lanka on Wednesday. The left-handed opener struck 31 boundaries in a blazing 168-ball knock as the hosts toiled in the Galle field. Dhawan, drafted into the Indian squad at the last moment, said it was a blow to get out so close to a maiden double hundred. He was out in the last over before tea when he handed a simple catch to Angelo Mathews at mid-off, off paceman Nuwan Pradeep.
Apart from putting India in the driver's seat, the Delhi batsman also earned himself a slice of history with his stupendous batting effort.
The 31-year-old became only the third batsman, after Sir Donald Bradman and Virender Sehwag, to score 100 runs in a single session on two occasions. Dhawan accumulated 126 runs in the second session on Day 1 against the Lankans. Dhawan's 126 came off just 90 balls. In 2012, he had scored 106 in the 2nd session against Australia on his Test debut. While Sehwag achieved this feat in 2005 (vs Pakistan) and 2007 (vs South Africa), Bradman did so in 1930 and 1934.
Dhawan got a standing ovation from his teammates in the dressing room upon completing his fifth Test century.
The innings was especially sweet for Dhawan, who was made to sit out of India's last 11 Tests following a dip in form.
His last Test century was at the same venue, during India's 2015 tour of the island nation. India lost the Galle match but went on to win the remaining two games to pocket the series 2-1.
(With inputs from AFP)