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Gambhir shines in tame draw

July 20, 2008 20:06 IST

Gautam Gambhir made up for his first innings flop show with a strokeful 60 as the three-day match between India and Sri Lanka Board XI petered to a mundane draw at the Nondescripts Cricket Club Ground in Colombo on Sunday.

After India declared their first innings at overnight score of 196 for eight, the hosts scored 247 for six in 55 overs before asking Anil Kumble and his men to take strike again.

India lost Virender Sehwag (14) and Rahul Dravid (26) before reaching 129 for two in 31 overs as the match ended in a stalemate.

Gambhir, who had scored just four in the first innings, was not out on a fluent 60 off 82 balls with the help of eight boundaries.

Sourav Ganguly was unbeaten on 22 off 45 balls that included just one boundary as the left-hander decided to spend maximum time in the middle.

With Kumble deciding to give his bowlers a go at the Sri Lankans, Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma removed off-colour Upul Tharanga (5) and Mahela Udawatte (15) to reduce the hosts to 29 for two.

Harbhajan Singh once again scalped a couple but Chamara Silva (59 not out) and Dammika Prasad (43 not out) put their foot down to ensure there was no batting collapse and set India a target of 276 runs.

India had a poor start as Sehwag returned after a run-a-ball 14 even though Gambhir was determined to make the best of the opportunity.

Dravid had lasted just 10 balls in the first innings and he had a prolonged 47-ball stay today.

With Sachin Tendulkar hitting 69 in the first innings to prove that there is no cobweb in his batting, the think-tank promoted Ganguly, who had a forgettable first innings.

Ganguly responded by hanging out there to get into the groove and spent as much time possible in the middle.


Sri Lanka Board XI 1st innings: 224 all out

Indian 1st innings: 196 for 8 declared

Sri Lanka Board XI 2nd innings:
U Tharanga c Karthikb Khan 5
M Udawatte c Harbhajan b Sharma15
J Mubarakc Sehwag b Harbhajan 41
C Kapugedera  lbw b Patel 22
S Kandamby c Tendulkar b Harbhajan 27
C Silva not out 59
J Silva run out 13
K Prasad not out 43

Extras (B-7, NB-15)  22

Total (for six wickets declared in 55 overs) 247

Fall of wickets: 1-11, 2-29, 3-96, 4-100, 5-139, 6-173.

Bowling: Zaheer Khan 13-2-61-1, Ishant Sharma 9-1-36-1, Munaf Patel 9-1-33-1, Harbhajan Singh 16-4-53-2, Sourav Ganguly 1-0-12-0, Virender Sehwag 6-1-41-0, Gautam Gambhir 1-0-4-0.

Indians 2nd innings:
V Sehwag c Kapugedera b Prasad 14
Gautam Gambhir not out 60
Rahul Dravid b Herath 26
Sourav Ganguly not out 22

Extras (B-5, NB-2) 7

Total (for two wickets in 31 overs)129

Fall of wickets: 1-21, 2-87.

Bowling: Sujeewa de Silva 7-0-35-0, Dammika Prasad 6-1-28-1, C Kapugedera 3-1-4-0, S Prasanna 8-0-31-0, R Herath 6-0-23-1, J Mubarak 1-0-3-0.

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