Thatscricket - News - At last! India scores a fine victory over Lanka
Published: Saturday, July 28, 2001, 22:25 [IST]
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Bangalore: India on Saturday finally registered its first win in the Coca Cola triangular series to breathe life into the championship. India reached the required target of 184 in the 46th over with seven wickets to spare at the R Premadasa Stadium. V V S Laxman (87 not out) and stand-in skipper Dravid (43) were the corner stones on which India built its innings.Needing 184 to register its first win and thereby instill some life into the championship, India suffered an early jolt when Vaas cleaned up Amay Khurasiya in the very first over to have India one for one.Laxman - supposed to be returning after this match in order to attend to knee problems - was at his fluent best facing up to the Sri Lankan medium pacers, caressing the ball past the packed off-side field. All he did was get in line and give the ball a pat and down it sped to the ropes. Sehwag, too, played a lot of boundary shots to ease off the early pressure brought on by the loss of Khurasiya. However, the introduction of spin strangled the run flow. Very soon, Dharmasena struck when Sehwag stepped out and tried to force him over mid-on, but only succeeded in presenting Sagakkara with an relatively easy catch to have India 67 for two in the 14th over.Laxman and Dravid then steadied things a little bit by taking some time to study the spinners and later opened out to collect their singles and twos on a regular basis dotting it with an odd boundary or two, to take the score to 103 for two at the end of the 24th over and later to 125 for two at the end of the 31st over. Laxman in the process reaching a much needed 50 coming of 80 balls. The pair continued the good work and made the progress even sweeter by picking up the pace of the run rate. Dravid, then, departed at 151 trying to run down Vaas to third man only succeeded in handing Kaluwitharana with a straight forward catch.As a result the run rate slowed down a little bit given the fact that new man Badani was taking his time to get his eye in.India finally got to its victory target in the 46th over with seven wickets to spare.