Images from Day 2 in the first Test between India and Sri Lanka, in Mohali, on Saturday.
Ravindra Jadeja reaffirmed his status as the country’s premier Test all-rounder with an attractive century and his spin bowling partner Ravichandran Ashwin scored a half-century as India cruised to 468 for 7 by lunch on Day 2 of the first Test against Sri Lanka, in Mohali, on Saturday.
Jadeja (batting 102 off 166 balls) registered his second Test hundred, which included 10 boundaries, while Ashwin (61 off 82 balls), who has a great batting track record in the sub-continent, scored his 12th fifty in the longest format.
The hundred will surely be an immense confidence booster for the Saurashtra man, who missed four Tests this season due to a knee injury.
India is slowly and surely batting Sri Lanka out of the game. The seventh-wicket partnership of 130 runs between Jadeja and Ashwin has, in all likelihood, put the final nail in their coffin, unless there is an out of the world batting effort from the visitors.
The 111-run stand off 27 overs between India’s spin twins during the session came at brisk pace.
The Sri Lankans looked despondent at the start of the day, and Dimuth Karunaratne’s defensive field placings were testimony to how they were just trying to bide time rather than think of getting wickets.
Their left-arm spinner Lasith Embuldeniya (39-3-152-2) at one point bowled with a long-off, deep mid-wicket, deep fine leg and deep point, trying to save boundaries.
As a result Jadeja and Ashwin milked the bowling for singles and doubles while also getting their share of fours.
Thus, it turned out to be a wicketless session as the home team hit more than 50 boundaries and four sixes.
There was a point when both the batters just casually drove the half volleys to the fence and there was not a single Sri Lankan bowler putting any extra effort to stop the flow of runs.
Finally, after having faced 81 deliveries and hitting eight boundaries, Ashwin was dismissed when Suranga Lakmal dug one short and the batter gloved a hook shot to ‘keeper Niroshan Dickwella.
But that did not deter Jadeja from getting to the three-figure mark by pushing an Embuldeniya delivery towards cover for a single, which brought out his customary sword celebration.
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