Harbhajan Singh R Ashwin India
Harbhajan Singh and R Ashwin will be key bowlers for India on Day 3 of the 1st Test match against Sri LankaReuters

Kumar Sangakkara, you feel, will hold the key to Sri Lanka's destiny on Day 3 of this first Test match against India. If the veteran, playing the penultimate Test match of his career, can produce a double hundred he has so often scored, Sri Lanka might just get out of jail. If not, this match in Galle could end in a hurry.

R Ashwin showed he will be a threat on Day 3 with the wicket of Dimuth Karunaratne, while Amit Mishra also would have gained confidence from his wicket of Kaushal Silva.

Those two wickets in the four-over spell before the close of play would have hurt Sri Lanka more than they can imagine. To see the openers dismissed after the first 11 deliveries of the match is a cut that will run deep, and the only way to close those cuts is by scoring runs on Day 3.

Sangakkara, who came in at the fall of the second wicket, ahead of Lahiru Thirimanne, will want to put on as big a partnership as possible with nightwatchman Dhammika Prasad and frustrate the India bowlers – to begin with.

The more frustrated they get, the more likely they are to stray in line. Getting Ashwin off his stride will be key. As Ashwin showed in the first innings, if you allow him to get into a rhythm, and dictate the proceedings, you are in trouble.

Therefore, Sangakkara will need to take the lead and make sure Ashwin is not allowed to control the flow of the Test match on Day 3. Easier said than done, of course, but if there is a batsman capable of doing it, it certainly is that elegant left-hander.

It cannot be Sangakkara alone, though, and the likes of Angelo Mathews, Thirimanne, Jehan Mubarak and Dinesh Chandimal need to chip-in and set a target that India will dread chasing.

India will know, if they can get Sangakkara's wicket early in the morning, it could mean a quick end to the Test match. While Mathews and Chandimal showed this batting lineup is a little more than just the great left-hander, the body blow that Sri Lanka will feel with the loss of Sangakkara in the second innings could be one that they will find difficult to get up from.

Ashwin will be key, but Mishra and Harbhajan Singh, so disappointing in the first innings, also need to back the leading spinner, while Ishant Sharma and Varun Aaron will want to do what they did in the first innings, sans the leaking of runs from Aaron's perspective.

The defining battle you feel will be Ashwin vs Sangakkara, and how that battle goes could just decide where this Test match will end up.

Where to Watch Live

Get the Day 3 Live Blog HERE

India vs Sri Lanka Day 3 of the first Test match is set to begin at 10 am local time (10 am IST, 5.30 am BST, 12.30 am ET). Live coverage in India will be on Sony Six and Sony Kix, with English and Hindi commentary respectively. Livsports will provide the live streaming online option.

Audience watching the match in the US, brave enough to stay up, can switch to Willow TV, while the live stream option is on Willow TV Online.

Viewers in Sri Lanka and the remaining subcontinent can catch the match live on Sony Six.

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