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12 August 2017, 09:01 | Randolph Howard
Sri Lanka recalled Dushmantha Chameera for the final Test against IndiaMore
Sri Lanka have added fast bowlers Dushmantha Chameera and Lahiru Gamage to their squad for the third Test against Indiain Pallekele.
R. Ashwin and Wriddhiman Saha attempted to survive the final hour against a Sri Lankan attack that gradually found its radar.
His last global stint was in T20I cricket in February this year, when India hosted England for a full-fledged tour.
In fact, this was India's first century-plus stand away from home since June 2015.
The visitors already 2-0 up in the series, brought in chinaman Kuldeep Yadav in place of all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, who was banned for one match for breach of conduct. This was the sixth century of his Test career.
Once those fidgety minutes vanished, the batsmen were in fine fettle.
As is always the case with a bowler sticking to a wicket-to-wicket line, Karunaratne created a chance when he got Rahul to hit over the mid-on region.
Dhawan reached his hundred off 107 balls when he he drove Malinda Pushpakumara for four - his 15th in the innings - through extra cover in the 43rd over. Rahul struck his seventh fifty in succession. India 134 for no loss at lunch and seemingly set for take-off. An exponent of the dibbly-dobbly, Karunaratne, who has one victim in 41 Tests, was tidy with his line and length, but that pace made it all too easy for Dhawan and Rahul. Except the pads, he removed all his batting paraphernalia and then spread his arms and exulted. Kohli not only needs to have a steady playing XI ready, but also be completely clear with respect to his bench strength as well as his potential options in case of injuries to his core-team players. He found a bit of drift early on, but also sent down a full-toss that Dhawan swept to the square-leg boundary. Skipper Virat Kohli too had expressed the desire to play county cricket ahead of the 2018 India tour of England.
Lakshan Sandakan bagged two wickets while Vishwa Fernando also chipped in with a wicket.
Spinner Dilruwan Perera was pressed in to action, but to no avail as Rahul and Dhawan scored at five runs per over and took India past the 100-run mark inside the first 20 overs.
It was now upto R Ashwin and Kohli to stitch a partnership. He slashes hard at a short-ish delivery from Sandakan, only managing to nick it toward the keeper.
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