India vs Sri Lanka: No Regrets About Changing Batting Order, Says Virat Kohli
An unbeaten 100-run partnership between MS Dhoni (45 not out) and Bhuvneshwar (53 not out) for the eighth wicket ensured that India beat Sri Lanka by three wickets and went 2-0 up in the five-match series.
A change in batting order almost derailed India's chase in the second ODI against Sri Lanka at Pallekele on Thursday before a brilliant partnership between former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar rescued the visitors. Indian skipper Virat Kohli defended his decision to demote himself down the order and said he had no regrets. Kohli said that with the chase going well he wanted to give the other batsmen in the team a chance. From 113 for one in the 17th over, India were reduced to 131 for seven in the 22nd over with mystery spinner Akila Dananjaya taking six wickets in a sensational spell.
But an unbeaten 100-run partnership between Dhoni (45 not out) and Bhuvneshwar (53 not out) for the eighth wicket ensured that India beat Sri Lanka by three wickets and went 2-0 up in the five-match series.
With India cruising in the beginning of their run chase (231 from 47 overs under Duckworth-Lewis method), Kohli made changes in the batting order, himself coming down to the fifth slot from his usual one-down spot.
Asked about this after the match, Kohli said he had no regrets about his decision to change the batting order.
"When you're 110 for 1 in a chase of 230, you want to give everyone a chance to bat. I don't have any regrets. If I had come at No.3, I would have still missed that ball because he (Akila Dananjaya) was bowling that well," Kolhi, who was dismissed for just four runs, said.
"It was quite an exciting game of cricket, fans and players must have been entertained. It is good for us to come through eventually. Two 100-run partnerships in a chase of 230 with seven wickets, that's quite bizarre. This kind of thing does not happen in this game often," he added.
Kohli gave credit to unheralded mystery spinner Akila Dananjaya, who took six for 54 from his 10 overs to wreck havoc on the Indian innings.
"We thought he was the off-spinner with a good leg-break, but he got four wickets off googlies. We'll be more careful next time. Credit to him for pitching the ball in the right areas."
Dananjaya, who got married on Thursday, got the man-of-the-match award.
"The off-spin was working, so continuously used the variations. I came back to the hotel at around 11pm last night," he said.