It was a bizarre T20I series of sorts. India recorded a comfortable win in the first T20I before Krunal Pandya tested positive just before the second game.
As many as nine players, including Krunal were ruled out from the Indian squad as they were close contacts. But the series went on despite the second T20I being postponed by a day.
India played with a mere five batters that they had left in the squad and Sri Lanka took full advantage of that, going on to win the last two T20Is. Take nothing away from Sri Lanka, they were excellent with the ball and got the job done with the bat as well.
Here we look at some of the best players from either side in this series.
There is absolutely no doubt that Wanindu Hasaranga was the best player of this series. The leg-spinning all-rounder bowled beautifully and returned with seven wickets at an economy rate of 5.58.
He averaged 9.57 and had a strike-rate of 10.2 with the ball. He chipped in with useful runs in the last two T20Is as well, making scores of 15 and 14 not out. Hasaranga was the Player of the Match in the third T20I and was aptly named the Player of the Series as well.
Dushmantha Chameera was the best fast bowler on display across both sides. The ace Sri Lankan pacer was quite consistent throughout the three games. He picked up four wickets, which came at an economy rate of 5.25.
Chameera was more than handy with the ball and he provided Sri Lanka with early breakthroughs in almost every game and was one of the stars.
DHANANJAYA DE SILVA
Dhananjaya de Silva couldn’t get going in the ODI series or the first T20I. However, the off-spinning all-rounder played a crucial role with the bat in Sri Lanka’s wins in the last two T20Is.
He scored a calm 40 not out in the second game to help Sri Lanka get over the line while chasing 133. In the third T20I, he chipped in with an unbeaten 23 and ensured Sri Lanka didn’t collapse.
De Silva was one of the better players from the series and top-scored for Sri Lanka in the T20I leg.
Suryakumar Yadav played just one game in this T20I series and was easily the best Indian batsman on show. He ended up as the leading run-getter despite playing just one match.
Suryakumar scored a skillful half-century on a tricky pitch; his 34-ball 50 propelling India to a fighting total of 164 in that first T20I.
Yadav showed off his class and range and reminded all about why he is rated as one of the best T20 players going around India. The Mumbaikar has now put a strong case for himself to be included in that T20 World Cup squad for India.
Rahul Chahar was one of the few bright spots for India in this T20I series. The Rajasthan-born leg-spinner played the last two T20Is and returned with four wickets.
He bowled with excellent control and was the go-to man for Shikhar Dhawan whenever India needed a wicket. Chahar picked up the crucial wicket of Wanindu Hasaranga in the second T20I, before returning with figures of 3/15 from his four overs in the third game.
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