The task became tough once Surya departed in the 16th over, but Axar and Shivam Mavi (26 off 15) shared quick 41 runs to bring down the equation to 21 off the last over
Suryakumar Yadav and Axar Patel struck blistering fifties in a stunning 91- run stage, albeit in a losing cause as Sri Lanka tensed the screws in the nick of time to beat India by 16 runs in the alternate T20I and position the three- match series 1- 1 in Pune on Thursday. commander Dasun Shanaka made a hinder- guard unbeaten 56 off 22 balls, while gate- keeper Kusal Mendis hit a 31- ball 52 to power Sri Lanka to an assessing 206 for 6. India had a terrible launch to their chase rising to 57 for 5 before Axar( 65 off 31) and Surya( 51 off 36) raised expedients of an questionable palm with a scintillating sixth- gate stage.
The task came tough formerly Surya departed in the 16th over, but Axar and Shivam Mavi( 26 off 15) participated quick 41 runs to bring down the equation to 21 off the last over.
But Axar’s redundancy in the third ball of the final over was the last nail in the pall for India.
If that wasn’t enough debutant Rahul Tripathi sneaked one to Kusal Mendis off Dilshan Madhushanaka in the coming over before commander Hardik Pandya departed an over latterly as India drooped to 34 for 4 in4.4 overs.
Surya and Deepak Hooda tried to stabilise the innings with a hard- fought 23- run cooperation but with the asking rate creeping up, the ultimate departed in hunt of a big shot, caught by Dhananjaya de Silva off Hasarnaga de Silva as India lost half of their side for 57. Surya and Axar tried to up the figure with a sensational 91- run sixth- gate cooperation out just 40 balls to keep India round after a citable launch.
Axar was particularly severe on off- incentive Maheesh Theekshana, clobbering the bowler for a four and six over long- on in the 13th over.
It wasn’t just Theekshana, Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva too had to bear the mass of Axar’s aggression as the left- hander smacked the bowler for a chapeau- trick of sixes in the 14th over.
Axar brought up his demoiselle fifty off just 20 balls with a six of Karunaratne over long- out.
Surya followed suit, registering another forfeiture fifty with a six out over square- leg off Madhushanaka.
The brace raised expedients of a notorious palm but it wasn’t to be as the callers pulled the strings just in time to level the series.
Before, it was a disastrous performance from the Indian bowlers after taking to field as the Lankan batters went hammer and tongs from the onset. Barring Axar(2/24 from his 4 overs), all other Indian bowlers went for runs.
Indeed though scrambler Umar Malik(3/48) picked up three lattices, he too was taken to the cleansers, while last match’s idol Mavi(0/53) looked a pale shadow of himself.
Arshdeep Singh conceded 19 runs of the alternate over, which included two back- to- back no balls that yielded 17 runs.
Hardik too went for 11 runs from his alternate over as Mendis top- edged one over deep third man.
Mavi was also taken to the cleansers by Mendis in his opening over, which yielded 15 runs.
Spin Brace of Axar and Yuzvendra Chahal(1/30) gave respite for two overs before Pathum Nisanka( 33) struck a four and also a mammoth six over deep midwicket. India’s first advance came in the ninth over when Chahal had Mendis LBW after Hardik went for a successful review.
Sri Lanka suffered their alternate blow in the first delivery of the coming over when Malik beat Bhanuka Rajapaksa by pace to clean his wholes.
Despite losing two lattices, Sri Lanka reached a healthy score of 89 at the half- way mark.
But Axar tasted success soon when he dismissed Nissanka, caught by Tripathy. He snared his alternate victim of the day in his coming over when Dhananjaya de Silva was caught by Hooda at long on.
Charith Asalanka( 37) looked in portentous mood as he dispatched Chahal over deep midwicket in successive deliveries.
Aslanka also pulled a Malik short delivery for another six but three balls latterly the leader had the last laugh as he’d the batter caught by Gill with a analogous delivery in his coming over.
Malik knocked off the timbers off Wanindu Hasaranga with a pacy delivery a ball latterly to stand in the chance of a chapeau- trick.
But it wasn’t to be Malik’s day as Sri Lanka commander Shanaka muscled the bowler over his head for a one brio four. Know More Cricket News…