Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Cuttack, Nov 2:
Invited to bat by Sri Lankan captain Angelo Mathews, India put up a mammoth 363/5 in the first innings of the first of five one day international (ODI) matches for the Micromax Cup as Odisha’s very own Barabati Stadium shed its reputation as a modest scoring ground here this afternoon.
It was the highest score at the picturesque Barabati Stadium while Openers Shikhar Dhawan and Ajinkya Rahane erased a 30-year old record for highest first wicket partnership by putting up a staggering 231 runs.
Both openers notched up centuries, Rahane scoring 111 and Dhawan 113.
Dhawan and Rahane started cautiously reaching 50 in as many as 10.6 overs. But all hell broke loose once captain Virat Kohli chose to take the power play as early as the 23 rd over.
The scorching pace set by the opening duo did not taper off even after they departed. Suresh Raina celebrated his 200th one day international by scoring 52 off just 34 balls. He, in fact. hit the eight ball he received for a rasping six.
Captain Kohli did not last very long and scored just 22, but the Sri Lankan bowlers had little respite from the onslaught launched by the Indian batsmen.
Even Aksar Patel, the leg spinner who came in with just a few balls to go, hit the first two balls he received for sweetly timed sixes, the first going straight over the bowler’s head and the second sailing over the mid wicket fence.
Notwithstanding the dew factor that is certain to cause some problems to the Indian bowlers, it would be a Herculean task for the Sri Lankan batsmen to surpass the stupendous score of 363 put up by the Indians.
Earlier, before the start of the match, star batsman Suresh Raina was felicitated by Oodisha Cricket Association (OCA) honorary secretary Asirbad Behera on his 200th one day international with a memento.