The second test of the Sri Lanka – India test series gets underway at the SSC grounds in Colombo today. Indian skipper Virat Kohli won the toss and has elected to bat first.
The youthful Virat Kohli led Indian outfit will be looking for a series win after their dominating performance in Galle, thrashing the hosts by 304 runs. The Indian batting lineup will be bolstered by the return of KL Rahul, who replaces Abhinav Mukund who is left out of the side despite a solid 81 run knock in the first test.
In his seven most recent innings, Rahul has made six half-centuries, the best of which was the 90 on a spitting Bangalore track against Australia. In a country that has been notoriously unkind to openers, India have enough faith in Rahul to restore him to the XI, despite having other good options.
The wounded Lankan outfit will be bolstered by the return of captain Dinesh Chandimal who was ruled out of the first test match due to fever. Chandimal has obtained special ICC permission to use an inhaler during the match. Being appointed a mere two days before the Zimbabwe test match, Chandimal is faced with the daunting task of facing the formidable Indians on his home turf.
The Lankan bowling outfit will have an additional mystery component through debutant Malinda Pushpakumara. The 24 year old with a stellar first class career will have high expectations for the upcoming match.
INDIA (PLAYING XI) – SHIKHAR DHAWAN, LOKESH RAHUL, CHETESHWAR PUJARA, VIRAT KOHLI(C), AJINKYA RAHANE, RAVICHANDRAN ASHWIN, WRIDDHIMAN SAHA(W), HARDIK PANDYA, RAVINDRA JADEJA, MOHAMMED SHAMI, UMESH YADAV
SRI LANKA (PLAYING XI) – UPUL THARANGA, DIMUTH KARUNARATNE, KUSAL MENDIS, DINESH CHANDIMAL (C), ANGELO MATHEWS, NIROSHAN DICKWELLA (WK), DHANANJAYA DE SILVA, DILRUWAN PERERA, RANGANA HERATH, MALINDA PUSHPAKUMARA, NUWAN PRADEEP