Wrap-up: So that’s it from us for the day. Another day that was clouded by talks of pollution – it is indeed one of the worst days in terms of AQI in Delhi – but there’s no denying India have absolutely grabbed the match by the scruff of its neck. Just 7 more wickets needed for India to wrap up a 2-0 win.
STUMPS on day 4, Sri Lanka 31/3: Yes, you read that right. One over, two wickets after the play was almost called off before this over. Unlucky Sri Lanka, but all credit to Jadeja. First Karunaratne nicks one to Saha behind the stumps and then night watchman Lakmal gets out as well, playing on to the stumps – the off stump is on the ground and Jadeja was still appealing for some reason.
After 15 overs, SL 31/1: Some intent from Dhananjaya finally, as he hits Ashwin for a six – he’s conceded just 12 runs from his 5 overs so far. Dhananjaya was given out LBW as well against Jadeja but he reviewed immediately and there was an inside edge.
As bad light is most certainly ending play early in Delhi, it’s just another reason to love the day-night Test in Adelaide which is shaping into an absolute classic.
After 9 overs, India 16/1: As expected, spin from both ends. Shami came in to bowl his next and was seemingly told by the umpire the light is not good enough for fast bowling, let alone the firebombs he was delivering. Ashwin and Jadeja in tandem.
After 6 overs, India 14/1: WHAT. AN. OVER. Shami breathes fire, and provides India their first breakthrough. Two snorters – first one, Sadeera sways away and somehow avoids getting anything on it. Next ball, he sways away again and gloves it (a tiny feather) to gully. Thinks he hasn’t edged it, takes a review and snicko shows a spike when it crosses the glove.
Ashwin into the attack...
After 5 overs, SL 12/0: Virat Kohli is already doing his cheerleading thing, egging the crowd on at the Kotla and the crowd respond to him gladly. Solid start by Shami and Ishant, hitting good lengths and generating good pace. A few edges have not carried. And the Sri Lankan openers are handling it well too.
After 1 over, SL 1/0: The final innings of this series in underway! Matter of time before India wrap up a 2-0 win or can Sri Lanka pull off a (massive) surprise? Ishant with the first over and there’s already an edge that doesn’t carry to slips.
India declare with a lead of 409 runs: Sri Lanka need 410 runs in a little over 3 and a half sessions to level this series. (Yes, they still haven’t lost it.) The declaration comes the moment Rohit Sharma reaches his 50 – he’s hit a rich vein of form against the Sri Lankans, something that Rahane hasn’t managed to.
After 51 overs, India 236/5, lead by 399 runs: Virat Kohli falls for just 50! Believe it or not, that’s the first time he has failed to convert a half century into a century the last 7 times he’s reached that landmark. 293 runs in the Test and still disgusted with himself for getting out.
After 50 overs, India 232/4: 17 runs from the 2 overs since the message came out. And Kohli reaches his 50 – taking his tally to 93 runs in this Test. Declaration imminent.
After 48 overs, India 215/4 - lead by 378 runs: A message coming out through substitute Vijay Shankar. And meanwhile, Sadeera almost pulled off one of the greatest catches of all time at deep square leg by diving full strength to right and getting one hand to a front foot pull by Rohit. Even Virat couldn’t help but applaud.
India 204/4 in 45 overs (Kohli 34*, Rohit 31*).
200 up for India immediately after Tea. How much longer do you think India will bat? Kohli, Rohit have settled down and might bring out the fireworks soon. They lead by 366 runs.
At tea, India 192/4 - lead by 355 runs: The session started with Pujara playing the aggressor and Dhawan playing second fiddle, and soon the Delhi lad took over the charge with Pujara falling for 49. And finally, Rohit and Kohli have kept the rate up, with a run-a-ball partnership. Join us for the post-tea session soon.
Meanwhile, in today’s bizarre sports news...
After 41 overs, India 181/4 - lead by 344 runs: A run-a-ball partnership between Rohit and Kohli, and one thinks India will declare a bit after tea, which is about 10 minutes away. Virat doing the scoring by running like the energiser bunny that he always is. And three boundaries so far Rohit – an elegant cover drive and a powerful front full off Gamage the stand out shots. The session run rate is over 5.
After 36 overs, India 145/4 - lead by 308 runs: Dhawan was on the charge at Kotla ever since Kohli walked out but falls for trying one big shot too many. Wouldn’t mind though. Dhawan is done in by the turn from Sandakan as he steps down the track and Dickwella completes a good stumping.
India 131/3 after 34 overs: Fifty for Shikhar Dhawan! On his 32nd birthday, Dhawan gets to his 5th ODI fifty. He’s stepped up the scoring rate significantly since Pujara’s dismissal and celebrates getting to the landmark with a big six over the straight screen of Sandakan. Massive intent from the Delhi boy. And that six brings up his 2000 Test runs as well.
After 31 overs, India 106/3: Pujara’s un-Pujara innings comes to an end and he falls one short of a fine 50. Dhananjaya de Silva is the man who provides the breakthrough. Around the wicket, the ball stays with the angle, takes the outside edge and Mathews takes a fine catch – low to his left, in front of his ankles. 49 off 65 is very impressive with India trying to build a quick lead.
After 30 overs, India 102/2: India bring up the 100 in the second in the 30th over. This has been a productive session so far, without the batsmen even taking any risks. In 13 overs, they have scored 51 runs – at nearly 4 an over. Intent, without being overly aggressive.
Meanwhile, Australia are back on top in the Adelaide. (Now, that’s a proper Test match!)
After 27 overs, India 93/2: Dhawan (31) is slowly catching up with Pujara (40) – imagine saying that. The left-hander is starting to middle more of the balls now and gets his first boundary of the innings by cutting Perera for four and also brings up a neat landmark on his birthday.
After 22 overs, India 72/2: How often do we see Dhawan play second fiddle to Cheteshwar Pujara? The birthday boy Dhawan is batting on 21 off 49, while Pujara has moved on to 31 off 35 – not mindless hitting, mind you. Clever batting, finding the gaps by using his feet against Perera.
Back after lunch, India 60/2 after 19 overs: Positive start for India post-lunch. Perera and Gamage with the bowling duties. Pujara gets a lucky boundary off Gamage’s over due to a misfield at cover.
At lunch, India 51/2 after 17 overs: Looks like the in-form batsmen have been told to score quicker. It’s Pujara’s turn to come out with the intent of scoring quick. Two lovely shots off Perera’s penultimate over before lunch, and 13 came from that. India cross 50 in the final over as the umpires call lunch. A session that belonged to Sri Lanka perhaps? Some crucial late runs followed by tight bowling.
Back soon with post-lunch updates. Meanwhile, in Adelaide...
After 14 overs, India 30/2: And Ajinkya Rahane’s poor form continues. He tries to attack his way out of trouble and holes out at long on – it was a shot played in desperation, as he came down the track and lofted it high despite the fielder being at the deep and the bat turns in his hand. This is indeed a concern for India now. The scoring rate has been slow since Vijay’s dismissal as well, with even Dhawan playing slow, against his natural instinct –- batting on 10 off 34.
Pujara walks out to bat...
After 9 overs, Sri Lanka 24/1: Lakmal has walked off after vomiting on the field. First incident of discomfort from the the visitors today. Meanwhile Rahane seems to be getting into some sort of groove – two boundaries since that DRS reprieve. Now the Lankans review for another LBW, this is given not out and he escapes only by inches! Interesting phase this for him.
India 13/1 after 6 overs: Reprieve for Rahane in the fifth over! The umpire raises the finger after an LBW appeal by Lakmal. Rahane asked for a review. Review shows the ball would have gone down leg. This is a tentative start by the Mumbaikar who’s clearly out of form. He completely misreads an in-dipper after a series of outswingers but survives. Must have heaved a huge sigh of relief.
Meanwhile, Lakmal is throwing up again.
India 12/1 after 3 overs: And Sri Lanka have an early breakthrough. An uncharacteristic innings from Vijay comes to an end, as he clearly came out looking to score quick, driving on the up repeatedly. This one shapes away from him slightly, and Lakmal gets the outside edge.
And it’s Rahane at No. 3 today, perhaps a chance for him to find form. A good move.
India 8/0 after 1 over: Positive start for India. Vijay starts off with back to back boundaries in the first over. India start of positively. They would want to set a big target for the visitors with enough time to bowl them out over the course of today and Wednesday.
And yes, the masks are on...
Sri Lanka all out for 373: It looked as if India just wanted to take Sandakan’s wicket but Chandimal steps forward and offers his own. Plays an upper cut (a shot he already played once today) against Ishant and this time there is a third man. Birthday boy Shikhar Dhawan takes a simple catch and that’s the end of Sri Lanka’s vigil...
Big question now: Facemasks or no facemasks when Sri Lanka come out to bowl?
Sri Lanka (somehow) 372/9 after 134 overs: Ishant Sharma gets one full over at Sandakan and it makes for some terrific fun. He starts from over the wicket with a mix of short and wide and full balls. Then goes around the wicket to bowl a bouncer and follows that up with the full ball. All this while Rohit Sharma is standing at short leg and chirping away at the No. 11 with a cheeky smile on his face. The Sharmas are ganging up, but Sandakan survives...
Sri Lanka 372/9 after 133 overs: Dinesh Chandimal is of course farming the strike and scoring at a good clip. Shami and Ishant start in tandem for India. The Sri Lankan captain reaches his 150 in the very first over and in the two over since has hit three boundaries. Fails to take the strike with two fours off the last two balls in Shami’s over though... Ishant now has a crack at the No. 11
09:25 am: It looks like an early start (by 5 minutes) on day four, as bad light forced an early end on Monday. Chandimal on strike, Shami to start...
09:20 am: The biggest talking point of day three (apart from the pollution, of course) is India’s catching was exposed again. On a day when Saha took two blinders, the slip catching continued to be poor.
Here’s Vinayakk Mohanarangan on the shoddiness of it all:
09:05 am: Hello all and welcome to the live blog of the penultimate day of Test cricket between India and Sri Lanka this year (we have had way too many, haven’t we!?). And it was on day three that Sri Lanka decided to give India a fight with the bat with Angelo Mathews and Dinesh Chandimal putting together a marathon stand. It was a familiar tale towards the end though, with Ashwin leading India’s charge.
At stumps: The visitors were 356 for nine when bad light stopped play with Chandimal, on 147, and Lakshan Sandakan on 0, at the crease. They trail by 180 runs in their first innings.