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Thursday, April 18, 2024

1st ODI: India opt to bat against Lanka

Mahendra Singh Dhoni

NEW DELHI: Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni won the toss and chose to bat against Sri Lanka in the first one-dayer at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota on Saturday. 

India go in with two spinners in R Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha, while Irfan Pathan has been included as an all-rounder. 

Dope-tainted leg-spinner Rahul Sharma has been left out of the playing XI. 

For Sri Lanka, Rangana Herath is back replacing Jeevan Mendis. 

Barring the Indian Premier League, India have not been in action since their last international outing in South Africa in March. 

The hosts, by contrast, have been hungry Tigers on prey. They beat Pakistan at home in both ODIs and Tests, outplaying the high-riding opponents with a clinical performance. 

But India are not Pakistan and are known for greater deeds of consistency at the very high echelons of competitiveness. 

In the Indian squad their new vice-captain Virat Kohli and a solid Rohit Sharma would be the players to watch out for apart from a couple of comeback men — opener Virender Sehwag and pace spearhead Zaheer Khan. 

For Mahela Jayawardene and the Sri Lankans, it would just be the continuation of the good yields in the series against Pakistan. 


India: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Capt.), Virat Kohli (vice-Capt.), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Irfan Pathan, Ravichandran Ashwin, Zaheer Khan, Umesh Yadav, Pragyan Ojha. 

Sri Lanka: Mahela Jayawardene (Capt.), Angelo Mathews (vice-Capt.), Upul Tharanga, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara, Dinesh Chandimal, Lahiru Thirimanne, Thisara Perera, Nuwan Kulasekara, Lasith Malinga, Rangana Herath.

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