Hambantota, Jul 25: India skipper MS Dhoni felt that in-form Virat Kohli's wicket turned out to the turning point as India were bundled out for 138 in the second ODI against Sri Lanka in Hambantota on Tuesday.
Having decided to bat first, India were reeling at 60/5 as the top order was dismissed cheaply by Thisara Perera and Co. to give Sri Lanka a nine wicket win to level the series 1-1.
Both the batsmen who played brilliantly to set up the tone for the series with a 21 run victory, failed miserably on Tuesday as they succumbed to Thisara Perera's deliveries.
Within a span of three runs and 1.3 overs, Sehwag and Kohli were back in the pavilion. Probably that was the start of India's downfall as the rest of the batting order followed suit except Gautam Gambhir who scored his 32nd half century, who was the last batsman to be dismissed by Malinga in the 34th over.
Talking to reporters after the match, MS Dhoni said the team lost track by losing too many wickets very early in the innings, as they had lost 4 wickets within the first 10 overs.
"We lost too many wickets too quickly. After Virat fell, we failed to make a comeback. It was a disappointing day for us," said Dhoni at the post-match presentation ceremony.
He further stressed on not committing these errors again, as they have to learn from prior experiences and should not ponder much about the defeats.
"We need to learn from our experiences and not think too much about these defeats. You need to learn from mistakes but don't keep them in mind," he said.
Though the team failed miserably against the Lankans leaving the World Champions in shock, skipper Dhoni had a few words of praise for the Delhi opener Gautam Gambhir, who played a fabulous innings and ensured that the team crossed the three digit mark.
"Gambhir batted really well. In the last five games, we have had some good performances from our batsmen and bowlers."
His 65 off 96 balls helped the team post 138 which was definitely not sufficient against a team like Sri Lanka, but the score was predictable as he was the only batsman who actually played while the others failed to create an impact.
With a loss and a win in the last four days, MS Dhoni's men are wondering whether the three month break has had any effect on the team as they posted a mammoth total on Saturday and won the match by 21 runs, while they struggled to score runs at the same venue two days later as they posted only 138.
Since the next ODI is scheduled on July 28, Saturday, the team has more time to think and come up with their strategies.