Kohli century dooms Sri Lanka as India cruise to ODI victory

By Sports Desk January 10, 2023

Virat Kohli's 45th ODI century helped India to a comfortable 67-run victory over Sri Lanka at ACA Stadium on Tuesday.

Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan, who scored a double century in India's previous ODI last year, were surprisingly dropped for the first of three one-day matches.

But India had few issues without them, as Kohli, Shubman Gill and Rohit Sharma led them to an unassailable 373-7.

Gill and Rohit enjoyed a little luck, surviving lbw reviews, but went on to stage a fine opening stand of 143 to put the tourists firmly on the back foot right.

Dasun Shanaka (1-22) eventually accounted for Gill in the 20th over, and an inside edge saw Rohit snaffled by Dilshan Madushanka (1-43) not long after.

But then Kohli arrived to deliver his 73rd international century in all formats.

He, too, benefited from some fortune, dropped on 52 and 81, but Kohli was otherwise in irresistible form with 13 boundaries to eventually finish on 113 off just 87 balls, finally taken by Kasun Rajitha (3-88) when a big slog fell short.

Sri Lanka were always facing an uphill struggle as they moved into bat.

Pathum Nissanka's 72 off 80 was a decent opening effort, but they needed more.

Dhananjaya de Silva (47 off 40) injected some purpose before edging a Mohammed Shami delivery behind to Rahul, and Nissanka followed in the 31st over after slicing Umran Malik (3-57) to Axar Patel at midwicket.

Skipper Shanaka offered late resistance with a tremendous unbeaten 108, finishing with two boundaries, but it was far too late to change the outcome.

India have too much for Sri Lanka

One of the key differences here was India's brilliant efficiency with the bat. All but one of their nine batsmen recorded a strike rate of over 100, and five of those scored over 25 runs.

By contrast, only three Sri Lanka batters had such a strike rate, with Shanaka and De Silva the two to surpass 25.

A bad day for Sri Lanka's bowlers

Rajitha was the only Sri Lanka bowler to claim more than one wicket, and yet even his overs proved fairly expensive as he gave up 88 runs.

Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva (0-67) and Dunith Wellalage (0-65) also had particular difficulty at a ground that is, to be fair, known for being generous for scoring.

Related items

  • Portugal 2-1 Czechia: Conceicao's last-gasp heroics salvage Selecao on Ronaldo's landmark outing Portugal 2-1 Czechia: Conceicao's last-gasp heroics salvage Selecao on Ronaldo's landmark outing

    Francisco Conceicao proved the hero on his first competitive appearance for Portugal after his stoppage-time winner snatched a 2-1 victory over Czechia in their Euro 2024 opener.

    Cristiano Ronaldo became the first player in the European Championship's 64-year history to appear in six editions, but his landmark moment was overshadowed by a glimpse into Portugal's future.

    Conceicao was introduced after 90 minutes and scored just two minutes later, capitalising on a loose ball to send Portugal level on points with leaders Turkiye, who beat Georgia 3-1 earlier on Tuesday in Group F.

    Robin Hranac's unavoidable own-goal had earlier cancelled out Lukas Provod's rocketed second-half opener before Conceicao announced himself on the international stage at the Leipzig Stadium.

    Roberto Martinez's team were the only side to win every qualifying game for this tournament, with a perfect 10 wins from as many matches, and dominated the first half of their opener without reward.

    Ronaldo almost marked his landmark appearance with a goal just eight minutes in but rushed an unmarked header in uncharacteristic fashion from Rafael Leao's whipped cross.

    Bruno Fernandes angled a deflected long-range effort narrowly over as the one-way traffic persisted, before the Manchester United midfielder's teasing ball just evaded the lunging Leao.

    Fernandes was again the architect when his delicate throughball found Ronaldo, who was denied by Jindrich Stanek's fantastic stop from point-blank range.

    The Czechia goalkeeper was on hand once more before the interval, parrying away another fizzing Ronaldo strike as these two sides were the first to be goalless at half-time at Euro 2024.

    Portugal completed 368 passes in that first-half onslaught, their most on record in a single half at the European Championships since records began in 1980, and little changed after the break.

    Ronaldo tested the hands of Stanek with a dipping free-kick just before the hour, though Portugal were stunned soon after when Provod cannoned into the top-left corner from the perimeter of Diogo Costa's area.

    Yet a response swiftly followed as Stanek parried Leao's downwards back-post header against Hranac, who could only deflect into his own net to level proceedings.

    Diogo Jota had a late finish ruled out by VAR after Ronaldo was adjudged offside before his rebounded strike, though Conceicao pounced from Pedro Neto's half-cleared left-wing cross to snatch all three points.

    Substitute heroics save Ronaldo's landmark appearance

    Ronaldo already holds the record for the most appearances in European Championship history (26), though this outing marked another historic moment for the 39-year-old.

    Having featured at every Euros since his 2004 debut, Ronaldo is the first to go to six editions of the tournament, where his 14 goals make him the leading scorer in history.

    The former Manchester United attacker could not add to his tally here, and it was a familiar tale at the Euros for Ronaldo, who missed the 2016 final victory over France after his gut-wrenching injury.

    Eder stepped up as the extra-time hero on that occasion, and he was the last Portugal substitute to score at the Euros before Conceicao did so here.

    Conceicao's goal came just 111 seconds after being introduced and marks the fastest such goal since Ferran Torres for Spain against Slovakia in June 2021 (41 seconds) – what an introduction for the Porto man.

    Czech need more from Schick

    Patrik Schick scored five of Czechia's six goals at Euro 2020, becoming only the second Czech player to be the sole or joint-top scorer at a European Championship tournament – after Milan Baros at the 2004 edition (five goals).

    The forward has since lifted the Bundesliga title with Bayer Leverkusen last term, helping Xabi Alonso's side to an unbeaten league season with seven top-flight goals.

    Considering his record at the Euros and the 2023-24 trophy-winning campaign, Czechia may want more from their star striker – who was withdrawn on the hour after being cautioned and failing to manage a single shot.

    Yet with or without Schick, Czechia could have never prepared for Conceicao's late intervention. Ivan Hasek's side have now lost five straight games against Portugal and must bounce back when they face Georgia on Saturday.

  • Portugal 2-1 Czechia: Conceicao's last-gasp heroics salvage Seleaco on Ronaldo's landmark outing Portugal 2-1 Czechia: Conceicao's last-gasp heroics salvage Seleaco on Ronaldo's landmark outing

    Francisco Conceicao proved the hero on his first competitive start for Portugal after his stoppage-time winner snatched a 2-1 victory over Czechia in their Euro 2024 opener.

    Cristiano Ronaldo became the first player in the European Championship's 64-year history to appear in six editions, but his landmark moment was overshadowed by a glimpse into Portugal's future.

    Conceicao was introduced after 90 minutes and scored just two minutes later, capitalising on a rebound to send Portugal level on points with leaders Turkiye, who beat Georgia 3-1 earlier on Tuesday in Group F.

    Robin Hranac's unavoidable own-goal had earlier cancelled out Lukas Provod's rocketed second-half opener before Conceicao announced himself on the international stage at the Leipzig Stadium.

    Roberto Martinez's team were the only side to win every qualifying game for this tournament, with a perfect 10 wins from as many matches, and dominated the first half of their opener without reward.

    Ronaldo almost marked his landmark appearance with a goal just eight minutes in but rushed an unmarked header in uncharacteristic fashion from Rafael Leao's whipped cross.

    Bruno Fernandes angled a deflected long-range effort narrowly over as the one-way traffic persisted, before the Manchester United midfielder's teasing ball just evaded the lunging Leao.

    Fernandes was again the architect when his delicate throughball found Ronaldo, who was denied by Jindrich Stanek's fantastic stop from point-blank range.

    The Czechia goalkeeper was on hand once more before the interval, parrying away another fizzing Ronaldo strike as these two sides were the first to be goalless at half-time at Euro 2024.

    Portugal completed 368 passes in that first-half onslaught, their most on record in a single half at the European Championships since records began in 1980, and little changed after the break.

    Ronaldo tested the hands of Stanek with a dipping free-kick just before the hour, though Portugal were stunned soon after when Provod cannoned into the top-left corner from the perimeter of Diogo Costa's area.

    Yet a response swiftly followed as Stanek parried Leao's downwards back-post header against Hranac, who could only deflect into his own net to level proceedings.

    Diogo Jota had a late finish ruled out by VAR after Ronaldo was adjudged offside before his rebounded finish, though Conceicao pounced from Pedro Neto's left-wing cross to snatch all three points.

    Substitute heroics save Ronaldo's landmark appearance

    Ronaldo already holds the record for the most appearances in European Championship history (26), though this outing marked another historic moment for the 39-year-old.

    Having featured at every Euros since his 2004 debut, Ronaldo is the first to go to six editions of the tournament, where his 14 goals make him the leading scorer in history.

    The former Manchester United attacker could not add to his tally here, and it was a familiar tale at the Euros for Ronaldo, who missed the 2016 final victory over France after his gut-wrenching injury.

    Eder stepped up as the extra-time hero on that occasion, and he was the last Portugal substitute to score at the Euros before Conceicao did so here.

    Conceicao's goal came just 111 seconds after being introduced and marks the fastest such goal since Ferran Torres for Spain against Slovakia in June 2021 (41 seconds) – what an introduction for the Porto man.

    Czech need more from Schick

    Patrik Schick scored five of Czechia's six goals at Euro 2020, becoming only the second Czech player to be the sole or joint-top scorer at a European Championship tournament – after Milan Baros at the 2004 edition (five goals).

    The forward has since lifted the Bundesliga title with Bayer Leverkusen last term, helping Xabi Alonso's side to an unbeaten league season with seven top-flight goals.

    Considering his record at the Euros and the 2023-24 trophy-winning campaign, Czechia may want more from their star striker – who was withdrawn on the hour after being cautioned and failing to manage a single shot.

    Yet with or without Schick, Czechia could have never prepared for Conceicao's late intervention. Ivan Hasek's side have now lost five straight games against Portugal and must bounce back when they face Georgia on Saturday.

  • Ronaldo etches name into European Championship history with start against Czechia Ronaldo etches name into European Championship history with start against Czechia

    Cristiano Ronaldo etched his name into European Championship history on Tuesday after becoming the first player to feature in six different editions of the tournament.

    The five-time Ballon d'Or winner was named in Roberto Martinez's starting XI as Portugal started their Euro 2024 campaign against Czechia in Leipzig.

    Having appeared at every Euros since his 2004 debut, Ronaldo is the first to register six tournament outings in the 64-year history of UEFA's top international competition.

    Ronaldo also equalled the record for the most consecutive European Championship appearances made for a nation, featuring in all 18 of Portugal's matches since the Euro 2008 quarter-final.

    Only Leonardo Bonucci, for Italy between 2012 and 2021, can match that feat – but no player comes near the 39-year-old's scoring record on the European stage.

    Since 1972, Ronaldo has managed 20 goal contributions at the Euros (14 goals, six assists), more than double any other player – France's Michel Platini is second on 10 (nine goals, one assist).

    Yet there was more history for another Portugal player in Martinez's line-up.

    Veteran centre-back Pepe is just the second player to appear in as many as 20 games at the European Championship finals after Ronaldo (26).

    That pair are the first and third oldest players to play at this competition's finals, too, as well as being the oldest two outfielders, with Pepe aged 41 years and 113 days and Ronaldo at 39 years and 134 days.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.