India vs Sri Lanka 1st Test: Bad light denies India victory on tense final day
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Replying to India's second innings score of 352/8 declared, the visitors were reeling at 75/7 chasing 231, when umpires Nigel Llong and Joel Wilson decided there was not enough light to continue the game. There were still 5.3 overs to be bowled before the mandatory overs could begin. Kohli led from the front on the final day with an unbeaten 104 off 119 balls that included 12 fours and two sixes to help India take a 230 run lead after initial jitters.
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It was the talsiamnic batsman's 50th international hundred -- 18th in Tests, 11th as skipper, and the first at the hallowed ground. Following up, Bhuvneshwar Kumar (4/8) and Mohammed Shami (2/34) bowled superbly to drag the islanders to the cusp of defeat. Coming to the crease at a time the hosts were struggling in the first session courtesy Suranga Lakmal's devastating spell of swing bowling, Kohli held fort at one end milking all the bowlers around the park with equal severity.
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Kohli was circumspect with Lakmal, who took his wicket in the first innings, initially before hitting the same bowler for a six to bring up his ton, and equal Gavaskar's feat of 11 Test centuries as skipper. The right-hander was given out lbw when he was batting on 72 off a Lakmal delivery but he asked for a review which showed bat first. At the other end, Ravichandran Ashwin (7), Wriddhiman Saha (5) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (8) could not add much to the total.
Shanaka accounted for Ashwin and Saha while Lahiru Gamage (1/97) packed Bhuvneshwar back to the hut. The tourists started off disastrously, losing their top four batsmen for just 22 runs. Bhuvneshwar Kumar removed opener Sadeera Samarawickrama for a duck with Dimuth Karunaratne (1) following suit soon after, dragging a Mohammed Shami ball onto his stumps. First innings half centurion Lahiru Thirimanne (7) was taken at gully by Ajinkya Rahane off Bhuvneshwar's delivery.
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Angelo Mathews (12), who also batted well in the first innings scoring 52, did not survive a review after umpire Llong initially put his finger up to a lbw decision. Umesh Yadav was the bowler. Visiting captain Dinesh Chandimal (20 off 33; 3x4) and wicketkeeper-batsman Niroshan Dickwella (27) tried to stem the rot by stitching together a 47-run stand for the fifth wicket before Chandimal was castled by a 144 kmph Shami ripper.