Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
India were set a target of 176 to win after Sri Lanka wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Chandimal scored a career-best 162 not out on the third day of the first Test in Galle.
Starting out the day on 5/2, Sri Lanka lost nightwatchman Dhammika Prasad early on before their middle order put up some valiant performances, with Kumar Sangakkara making 40, captain Angelo Mathews scoring 39, Lahiru Thirimanne mustering 44 and Jehan Mubarak amassing 49.
However, it was Chandimal who stole the spotlight on the third day as his gutsy knock of 162 not out, which came off 169 balls and included 19 boundaries and four sixes, ensured Sri Lanka stayed in contention after teetering on the edge of a major collapse at the beginning of the day.
Chandimal’s unbeaten innings of 162 not only helped Sri Lanka post a score of 367, but also set India 176 runs to win.
Ravichandran Ashwin was the pick of the bowlers with four wickets, while Amit Mishra snapped up three and Harbhajan Singh, Ishant Sharma and Varun Aaron all claimed one wicket each.
Chasing 176 to win, India got off to a poor start as opening batsman Lokesh Rahul was given out lbw off the bowling of Rangana Herath for five runs.
Shikhar Dhawan and Sharma, who was sent out as the nightwatchman, managed to put together an unbeaten 11-run partnership before stumps was called.
Dhawan finished on 13 off 26 balls, which included two boundaries, while Sharma remained undefeated on five off eight deliveries, which included one boundary.
Herath was the only bowler to take a wicket.
India ended day three on 23/1 and will continue batting tomorrow at 10:00 local time or 04:30 GMT.