1st Test: Jadeja’s century, Ashwin’s fifty lift India to 468/7 against Sri Lanka

An unbeaten 102 from Ravindra Jadeja and a gorgeous 61 by Ravichandran Ashwin lifted India to 468/7 against Sri Lanka on day two of opening Test at the IS Bindra PCA Stadium on Saturday.

At lunch, Jadeja is still at the crease with Jayant Yadav (2 not out) giving him company. It was a session where Jadeja and Ashwin made merry with the bat while Sri Lanka, with a bowler short, looked tired and bereft of ideas.

Jadeja began the session by raising his half-century with a back-foot drive slapped through covers for a boundary off Suranga Lakmal. Whenever Sri Lanka bowlers gave width, Jadeja was quick to pounce on them and send the ball to the boundary rope. When Sri Lanka tried to shift from width to straight lines, it was all too straight for Jadeja to easily swat through the leg-side.

Ravichandran Ashwin, on the other hand, took his time before he got going with boundaries through point and cover off Vishwa Fernando. Jadeja and Ashwin were in cruise mode, unperturbed by a Sri Lanka bowling attack which won’t have the services of Lahiru Kumara for the rest of the match. Ashwin continued to drive with finesse and reached his 12th Test fifty with a single through covers.

Jadeja and Ashwin put 130 runs for the seventh wicket to take India past 450. After pulling Lakmal through mid-wicket, Ashwin tried to pull again. But Lakmal, coming from around the wicket, cramped him for room and the ball took a faint top-edge to keeper Niroshan Dickwella.

In the next over, Jadeja brought up his second Test century with a single through cover. It was quite ironic that Jadeja, who was nicknamed ‘rockstar’ by leg-spin great Shane Warne during the inaugural season of IPL in 2008, completed his Test hundred a day after the legendary cricketer’s demise.

An over later, lunch was declared with India still in a position of ascendancy and Sri Lanka staring at another session of toil under the sun.

Brief Scores: India 468/7 in 112 overs (Ravindra Jadeja 102 not out, Rishabh Pant 96; Lasith Embuldeniya 2/152, Suranga Lakmal 2/86) against Sri Lanka.

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