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06 Nov 2014 - 25 Nov 2014

Stats Highlights, India vs SL, 5th ODI

Virat emulates Ganguly, Kapil as he leads India to a 5-0 win over Sri Lanka
Virat Kohli captain of India reacts after hitting the winning shot during the 5th One Day International, ODI, between India and Sri Lanka held at the JSCA International Stadium, Ranchi, India on the 16th November 2014

Photo by:  Pal Pillai/ Sportzpics/ BCCI

Kedar Jadhav and Niroshan Dickwella were making their ODI debut. They became 205th and 161st player to represent India and Sri Lanka respectively.

For the first time in the series Sri Lanka did not lose a wicket in the batting powerplay.

Playing his 138th match and 116 innings, Angelo Mathews (139*) scored his maiden ODI hundred. He had scored 24 fifties with a highest of 93.

Mathews completed his 1,000 runs in ODIs in the year 2014 when his score reached 77. He became first player to reach this landmark this year (later Virat Kohli became the second batsman to accomplish this feat).

Having already scored 1,044 runs in Test cricket this year, Mathews became only the third captain to aggregate 1,000 runs in a calendar year both in Tests and ODIs. Sachin Tendulkar (in 1997) and Ricky Ponting (in 2005) are the two other captain to do so.

Sri Lanka made 73 runs in last five overs with Angelo Mathews contributing 60 off 20 balls with seven sixes and two fours.

Mathews’ 139* is the second highest score by a Sri Lankan captain after Sanath Jayasuriya’s 189 also against India at Sharjah in 2010.

Matthews hit 10 sixes during his innings, which are the most by a captain in an ODI. Australia’s Ricky Ponting hit 9 sixes against South Africa at Johannesburg in 2006.

Virat Kohli (139*) made his 21st ODI hundred – his fourth as captain.

The hundred was Kohli’s 14th in a chase. Only Sachin Tendulkar (17) has scored more hundreds in a chase.

The hundred was Kohli’s 13th in a successful chase. He is now just one short of Sachin Tendulkar’s record of most hundreds (14) in successful chases.

Virat Kohli aggregated 1,000 runs in ODIs when his score reached 85 becoming second batsman after Angelo Mathews to do so. 

Kohli has now aggregated 1,000 runs in four consecutive years since 2011 (he missed the mark in 2010 by just 5 runs). Kohli now joins fellow Indian Sourav Ganguly in scoring 1,000 runs for four consecutive years. Ganguly had done so between 1997 and 2000.

The 139 by Angelo Mathews and Virat Kohli is the highest identical score by two batsmen in a ODI. The previous highest was 125 by Graeme Smith and AB de Villiers for South Africa against Sri Lanka at Johannesburg in 2012.

The match provided only the third instance in ODI history of both captains scoring hundreds in the same match. William Porterfield (Ireland) and Eoin Morgan (England) at Dublin in 2013; and Mushfiqur Rahim (Bangladesh) and Virat Kohli (India) at Fatullah in 2014 presented the other two instances.

India won the five match series 5-0. The last and only other time India whitewashed Sri Lanka in a bilateral series was way back in 1982 when Kapil Dev led Indian side beat Sri Lanka 3-0. This was the fifth instance of India whitewashing the opponent in a five-match bilateral series. The list:

India white washing the opponent in a 5-match bilateral series

Opponent

Season

Venue

Captain

England

2008-09

India

MS Dhoni

New Zealand

2010-11

India

Gautam Gambhir

England

2011-12

India

MS Dhoni

Zimbabwe

2013

Zimbabwe

Virat Kohli

Sri Lanka

2014-15

India

Virat Kohli


Incidentally it was the first time Sri Lanka lost a series 5-0.

Rajneesh Gupta

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Virat ushers India into ‘ruthless’ culture

After match-winning 139*, captain says intent and aggression must start from the top

From the very first match of the ODI series against Sri Lanka, ‘ruthlessness’ has been Virat Kohli’s common refrain. When he was asked to lead the team, Virat had a goal in mind. He wanted Team India to make winning a habit and not give an inch to the opposition.

With his second 5-0 ODI series in as a captain Virat has been successful in setting the trend of ruthlessness. When he singlehandedly snatched victory from the jaws of defeat with one of his characteristic centuries in Ranchi, Virat had walked the talk. His unbeaten 139 snapped all fight out of the Lankans and fashioned India’s three-wicket win.

After the game, the captain spoke of the need to lead by example if he wanted his men to follow suit.

“From the first match I have spoken about creating a culture of ruthlessness and winning habit in the team, and it has come off beautifully,” Virat said. “It’s not easy to achieve a whitewash, especially against a subcontinent team in the subcontinent.

“If I ask the guys to be ruthless while being lazy myself, I’ll look stupid at the end of the day. Especially in a young team, the guys who are experienced have to lead the way. In a team, negativity can spread really quickly. You see two heads falling and six more will fall.

“The more the young guys see this kind of performances and know that the intent and aggression is coming from the top, they would want to follow. So, I, as the captain of the team, need to be at that intensity level first before asking anyone else to be there. It’s a conscious effort I have to make and it’s not that hard for me because I have always played my cricket like that,” Virat said.

While eventually India achieved the 288-run target with eight balls to spare, there was a time when the chances of victory looked bleak. Even as Virat was well set and looked in control with the bat, he was left helpless, standing at one end and watching his partners change ever so frequently at the other. Between the 35th and 45th over, Virat faced only 16 balls and saw three wickets fall.

He admitted it was a rather frustrating situation to be in. “It would be wrong if I said it is not frustrating. It’s one thing when your partner is hitting the ball well and you’re not getting the strike. But knowing that you’ve lost three-four batsmen at the other end without getting the strike is frustrating,” he said.

“That was the reason I batted at No. 4 in this series. You need someone who has batted in such situations and knows what needs to be done. I knew what I had to do at that time, which was stay calm, knock the ball around for singles.”

However, when he did get the strike, in the 46th over, Virat wasted no time in getting on with the job. He struck Ajantha Mendis for a six and a four, all the while keeping his head calm. He said the ability to make these decisions in crunch times comes with experience.

“Later on it is all about what your instincts tell you to do. Even with seven down I went after Mendis because we needed 41 from the last four overs and I knew that had to be the over to hit out. These are the decisions you learn to make with experience of playing a lot of games. I am glad I was out there well set, otherwise it was a difficult situation.

“It was a test for the boys who are new to such situations and they will only learn. As long as we keep learning from the mistakes that have been made, it’s all good,” he said.

When asked whether he will continue to bat at No. 4 in ODIs, Virat said it depended on the strength of the middle-order at a given time and where his contribution would benefit the team the most.

“As long as we are strengthened in the middle order, I don’t see any reason to keep batting at 4. I have scored most of my centuries and won most of the games for the team at No. 3.

“As long as I can play in the same way I did today batting at 3 as well, I don’t mind batting at either position because I am comfortable at both. Whatever my gut-feel tells me and what the team requires off me will decide my batting position. But I am sort of learning to bat at other positions as well.”

India used this series to test out a few young players, giving them more responsibilities and bigger roles. Ambati Rayudu batted at 3 regularly and scored 250 runs at 62.50. Axar Patel emerged as the highest wicket-taker with 11 scalps an impressive average of 18.09 and played two match-winning 14-run cameos with the bat. Virat was all praise for the two.

“I am very happy, especially with the way Rayudu batted throughout the series and the way Axar bowled and responded in difficult situations,” he said.

“For me, what Axar did in Cuttack was more astonishing because to go out there and hit those two sixes off low full-tosses – I don’t think even I can hit low full-tosses for sixes, especially if they are the first two balls I am facing – that was more a statement of his character than his innings today.

“Today he was listening to what I was telling him. If a guy knows how to bat, he can listen to the more experienced guy and do what is required. But in Cuttack there was no one out there with him. That spoke a lot about the cricketer, his mindset and character. Hopefully, if he continues to show that kind of composure, he will be preferred over some of the other guys. I am really happy for him and hopefully we will see him bat up the order in the future.

“What I like about him as a bowler is his self confidence. Even if I want to put seven fielders in the ring, he will never say no. He knows he can bowl to any field and keep the batsman back. He is very good at that. Even against the left-handers he is good because he knows how to cramp them up for room. It’s great to see such a young guy having so much belief in his ability. He expresses himself freely and is not scared, which is the most important thing.”

Shirin Sadikot

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