India thrash Lanka by 304 runs

Nuwan Pradeep was Sri Lanka's most economical bowler on a disastrous opening day

Abhinav Mukund and Virat Kohli scored half-centuries and shared a 133-run partnership to propel India's lead to 498 on Friday in the first test against Sri Lanka.

The Sri Lankans, especially their opener Dimuth Karunaratne (97) batted gutsily for the first two sessions reaching 192 for 4 at tea.

Apart from Kohli, Abhinav Mukund played a knock of 81.

Sri Lanka was 68-3 in its reply when Kusal Mendis fell for a duck to give Mohammed Shami his second wicket in an over. A big victory target of 550 was out of question for the hosts but they fizzled out in the final session of the fourth day to finish on 245 in 76.5 overs - their innings terminated with injured skipper Rangana Herath and Asela Gunaratne ruled out.

Skipper Kohli did not enforce the follow on and India walked out to bat only to lose their 2 centurions from the first innings early. Previous captain Angelo Mathews was on the crease with 54 runs and on the other side, Dilruwan Perera was there who was at 6 runs when the stumps were drawn for the day.

Pandya got his maiden Test wicket when he cleaned up Pradeep before Jadeja wrapped up the Lankan innings putting India 309 runs aheaded.

Just as the schools in the neighbourhood closed for the day and the jaunty students stepped onto the roads, a merry evening was in the making for India. Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane hit only two fours and a six in that time, but scored off all but seven balls they faced, against Sri Lanka's deep-set fields. Nuwan Pradeep (10) became the first Test scalp of Hardik Pandya and the hosts went into lunch at 289/8, with only one wicket in hand in absence of injured Asela Gunaratne, who had been ruled out of the Test due to a broken thumb. While Sri Lanka is in serious trouble while chasing the giant target of 550-runs as they have already lost their four-wickets when they are 431-runs behind the target. At 432 for five, India was staring at a Sri Lankan outfit that suddenly found its spark.

The pair added 101 for the fifth wicket before Dickwella was caught by wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha to become Ashwin's first victim of the innings. India lead the three-match series 1-0.

"I think it was after a long time a fast bowler has taken a five-wicket haul in Galle", Herath said. "You can not utilise so much energy in that but it always feels good to score runs especially when the team wins", Kohli, who scored 103 not out, added. Sri Lanka needs another 446 runs to draw parity but that is a huge mountain to climb.

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