ICC World Cup 2019: Match 44, Sri Lanka vs India, Review – Effortless Rohit Sharma, hard working Rahul brush away the Islanders

Rohit scored his 6th World Cup hundred, equalling the legendary Sachin Tendulkar's long-stand record.

Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul
Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul. (Photo Source: Twitter)

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This is just getting insane from Rohit Sharma. They call him the hitman and he’s hitting the right chord when it matters the most. His fifth hundred in this World Cup, most by any batsman in a single edition, made the Sri Lankan effort look below-par. KL Rahul too chipped in with his first World Cup and second ODI hundred to make a mockery of the 265-run target.

Batting first, Sri Lanka got off to a flying start as Bhuvneshwar Kumar struggled to find the right lines with the new ball. But Jasprit Bumrah continued to weave his magic and dismissed both these openers in almost quick succession to give India the upper hand. Ravindra Jadeja, who is playing his first game this World Cup, picked up Kusal Mendis right after the powerplay.

Concerns furthered for the Lankans who lost their in-form Avishka Fernando courtesy another smart piece of work from Hardik Pandya. At 55/4, it seemed like they would struggle to get to a respectable total, but Lahiru Thirimanne and Angelo Mathews finally took responsibility as the seniors in the side and consolidated the situation.

The duo had to struggle to face Jadeja and the others in the middle overs, but their cautious start helped them build a platform and go on it. Their partnership accounted for 124 runs and it ended with Thirimanne getting carried away after his half-century. Angelo Mathews didn’t do that and took the side to a respectable total.

He ended up scoring his third ODI hundred, which also is his third against India. Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah upped the ante in the death overs and didn’t allow runs to flow like a river. Sri Lanka ended up scoring 264 runs for the loss of 7 wickets.

Rohit rolls on; Records tumble like a pack of cards

While Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul were batting, it highlighted how well the Indians bowled on a track which didn’t have much for them. They drove the ball beautifully, lofted with authority and picked up singles and twos with relative ease. It was a text-book batting performance from the duo who completed yet another 100-run stand in the tournament.

Rohit was never going to stay back and he did pick up pace after his fifty. KL Rahul got there slowly but he did it with a strike rate in excess of 85, which is more than decent for someone who’s playing a second-fiddle. Rohit got to his 6th World Cup hundred, equalling the great man Sachin Tendulkar’s long-standing record with a boundary over mid-wicket and Kohli’s reaction in the dressing room said it all.

He was dismissed soon, but Rahul gave the fans another moment to stand up and applaud as he got to his ton after missing out on two good chances previously. Virat Kohli played a few outstanding shots in his short little stay and although Rahul and Pant fell in quick succession, there was no trouble for India and the captain took the side over the line easily.

Brief Scores

Sri Lanka: 264/7 in 50 overs (Angelo Mathews 113, Lahiru Thirimanne 53; Jasprit Bumrah 3/37)

India: 265/3 in 43.3 overs (KL Rahul 111, Rohit Sharma 104, Virat Kohli 34*)

Result: India won by 7 wickets

Man of the match: Rohit Sharma