Kohli leads India to Victory at Hobart

Kohli leads India to Victory at Hobart

Hobart : Australia | Feb 28, 2012 at 3:19 AM PST
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Virat Kohli's ton helps India earn bonus point against Sri Lanka

VIRAT KOHLI hit an unbeaten 133 off 86 deliveries as India reached the 321 target for the loss of 3 and defeat Sri Lanka by seven wickets in the eleventh match of the Commonwealth Bank Tri Nation Series Cricket at Bellerive Oval Ground, Hobart, Australia on Tuesday. Final scores: SRI LANKA 320/4 (50 overs) INDIA 321/3 (36.4 oves). The eventual Man of the Match, Kohli hit three huge sixes and 16 boundaries off 86 balls for his superb unbeaten 133 which had overshadowed the two centuries by Tillkaratne Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara. And equally good was Gautam Gambhir who had his share of 63 off 64 deliveries. The Indian chase of 321 through Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar also proved to be a solid one as the opening pair reached the fifty of the innings before Maharoof struck at 54 to remove Sehwag at the hands of Dilshan for 30 off 16 deliveries including a six and 5 boundaries. Gautam Gambhir and Tendulkar had added another 38 to the total before the Lankans had struck again, this time through Lasith Malinga, who had Tendulkar trapped leg before at 86 for 39. He also hit 5 boundaries. Virat Kohli and Gambhir then went on to a batting frenzy to add 115 runs for the third wicket and carry the total past 200 when Gambhir was run out at 201 for 63. A well judged throw from the fielder prevented Gambhir from second run, a risky one. He also had 4 boundaries to his credit. Suresh Raina joined Kohli and the two managed to reach the required runs without further damage in 37th over. Kohli played superbly hitting two sixes and 16 boundaries for his unbeaten 133 off 87 deliveries while Raina had his 33 not out also included a six and 3 fours. Another century partnership gave India the 7 wickets win. Earlier, Mahela Jayawardene and Tillakaratne Dilshan gave the Lankans a solid opening stand of 49 when the bowling change through Jadeja made a difference, Virender Sehwag took the catch, an easy one. Mahela didn't play with much punch and it just sailed into the hands of the Indian fielder. His 22 included a six and a boundary. Then followed a superb second wicket partnership between Kumar Sangakkara, coming at number 3 and Dilshan as both the batsmen hammered the Indian attack to reach their hundreds and carry the total past 250 before the second wicket was fallen at 253. Sanga finally lost his wicket, bowled Praveen Kumar for 105 including two huge sixes and 8 boundaries off 87 balls. A record 204 runs partnership between them. Just superb batting. Thisara Perera left early at 266, run out for 3 when Thisara tried the simpossible second run.Angelo Mathews and Dilshan then carried the total past 300 when Mathews left at 309, caught Ravichandran Ashwin off Zaheer Khan for 14. Well taken by the fielder as he had to run around for a couple of steps. Happy moments for the Indians. Just one over remaining when Dinesh Chandimal joined Dilshan and they carried it to 320 for 4 when the 50 overs were completed. Dilshan remained unbeaten at 160 hitting three sixes and 11 boundaries while Chandi made 2. Among the 7 Indian bowlers, Zaheer Khan, Praveen Kumar and Ravindra Jadeja took one each for 61, 64 and 43. India required 321 to win. While the Aussies were already in the finals, The Lankans play one more game before the second finalist was decided. Sri Lanka was ahead on the points table and even a tie would put the Indians through.

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India's Gambhir plays a shot during their Tri-series one-day international cricket match against Sri Lanka in Hobart
India's Gambhir plays a shot during their Tri-series one-day international cricket match against Sri Lanka in Hobart
TASNEEM KHAN is based in Miami, Florida, United States of America, and is a Reporter on Allvoices.
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