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India register first overseas series win since 2011

India team celebrate the series victory over Sri Lanka in Colombo.
India team celebrate the series victory over Sri Lanka in Colombo.
©REUTERS / Action Images

India 312 & 274 (Ashwin 58) beat
Sri Lanka 201 & 268 (Mathews 110) by 117 runs
Third Test, Colombo, day five

Angelo Mathews’ fighting ton went in vain as India won the third and final Test against Sri Lanka in Colombo by 117 runs to win the series 2-1, their first overseas series win since 2011.

Sri Lanka started the final day on 67 for three after 18.1 overs.

Mathews (110) had an early reprieve when he seemed to nick one off Ishant Sharma (3-32) only for it to be called as a no ball.

In the next over, Kaushal Silva (27) attempted to hook a bouncer from Umesh Yadav (2-65) only to mishit it to short mid-wicket.

Mathews had more luck when there was a misunderstanding in running between the wickets and was well short of the crease only for Ravichandran Ashwin (4-69) to miss the direct hit.

However, the blossoming partnership between Mathews and Lahiru Thirimanne (12) was broken by Ashwin when the latter got a leading edge to silly point, where Lokesh Rahul took a brilliant catch.

Sri Lanka went to lunch at 134 for five after 47 overs, with Kusal Perera (70) providing some support to his skipper. Sri Lanka managed 67 runs for the loss of two wickets in the first session.

The first part of the post-lunch session belonged to Sri Lanka as Perera and Mathews frustrated the Indians by playing positive cricket.

They added 108 runs in 29 overs in the post-lunch session playing cautious cricket while punishing all loose deliveries.

In fact, they were on the verge of playing out a wicketless second session giving real hope for an unlikely Sri Lankan win.

Perera brought up his second fifty of the match - his debut - with a four off Stuart Binny (0-49) taking Sri Lanka to 212 for five.

Mathews got lucky again in the 90s when Amit Mishra (1-47) trapped him in front of the wicket only for the umpire to turn it down suspecting an inside edge which didn’t exist.

He brought up a well-deserved century a couple of overs later with a four off Binny, his seventh overall. That 13-run over with three fours took Sri Lanka to 237 for five.

However, on the brink of tea, Perera tried the reverse sweep, hitting one straight to Rohit Sharma at point ending a brilliant 135-run sixth-wicket stand.

That proved to be the turning point India were looking for on a pitch that had seemed to slow down considerably.

Sri Lanka went to tea at 249 for six after 80 overs, needing 137 more to win the game. India took the new ball as soon as it was available which was in the first over of the post-tea session.

Ishant got the massive wicket of Mathews with the third ball of the session when the latter missed a straight delivery and was trapped plumb in front of the stumps. That was also his 200th Test wicket.

Ashwin and Mishra wrapped up the innings very quickly, with Ashwin picking up two wickets in the 84th over and Mishra taking the last.

Sri Lanka were all out for 268 in 85 overs losing the Test by 117 runs.

India thereby came back from their loss in the first Test to win the series, their first in Sri Lanka in 22 years.

Cheteshwar Pujara was named as the player of the match while Ashwin was named the man of the series.

© Cricket World 2015