After a weather-aided draw in the first game in Kolkata, normal service was restored in the second Test as India thrashed Sri Lanka by an innings and 239 runs at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Nagpur on Monday (November 27).
India restricted Sri Lanka to 205 in the first innings, before posting a mammoth 610 for 6 declared. The bowlers then completed the formalities by bundling out the visitors for 166, giving India their joint largest victory in Test cricket. Back in 2007, India had defeated Bangladesh in Dhaka by the same margin.
Largest Test victories for India
|inns & 239 runs||Sri Lanka||Nagpur||November 24, 2017|
|inns & 239 runs||Bangladesh||Dhaka||May 25, 2007|
|inns & 219 runs||Australia||Kolkata||March 18, 1998|
|inns & 198 runs||New Zealand||Nagpur||November 20, 2010|
|inns & 171 runs||Sri Lanka||Pallekele||August 12, 2017|
Incidentally, this was also the heaviest defeat for Sri Lanka in Test cricket. Their previous worst was against South Africa in 2001, when they were routed by an innings and 229 runs in Cape Town.
Biggest Test defeats for Sri Lanka
|inns & 239 runs||India||Nagpur||November 24, 2017|
|inns & 229 runs||South Africa||Cape Town||January 2, 2001|
|inns & 208 runs||South Africa||Colombo (SSC)||September 6, 1993|
|inns & 201 runs||Australia||Melbourne||December 26, 2012|
|inns & 175 runs||Pakistan||Dhaka||March 12, 1999|
After the Indian spinners went wicketless in Kolkata – the first such instance in a home Test — R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja were back among the spoils, bagging a combined haul of 13 scalps in this Test.
Ashwin, who took four wickets in each innings, reached the landmark of 300 Test wickets in his 54th match, thus beating Dennis Lillee’s 36-year-old record by two games. In a remarkable coincidence, Lillee had set the record on that very day — November 27, in 1981 — when he dismissed Wasim Raja of Pakistan for his 300th Test wicket.
Fastest to 300 Test wickets
|R Ashwin (Ind)||54||Sri Lanka||Nagpur||November 24, 2017|
|Dennis Lillee (Aus)||56||Pakistan||Brisbane||November 27, 1981|
|Muttiah Muralitharan (SL)||58||South Africa||Durban||December 26, 2000|
|Richard Hadlee (NZ)||61||Australia||Wellington||February 21, 1986|
|Malcolm Marshall (WI)||61||Australia||Melbourne||December 24, 1988|
|Dale Steyn (SA)||61||New Zealand||Cape Town||January 2, 2013|
Virat Kohli (213) was once again in sublime touch, bringing up his fifth Test double-century – all five coming while leading the side. With this latest knock, he equalled Brian Lara’s record of most double-hundreds as captain.
Overall, only Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar (six each) have more double-centuries among Indians, while Rahul Dravid has five, the same as Kohli.
Most double-hundreds as captain
|Virat Kohli (Ind)||31||49||4||2877||235||63.93||5|
|Brian Lara (WI)||47||85||4||4685||400*||57.83||5|
|Don Bradman (Aus)||24||38||7||3147||270||101.51||4|
|Michael Clarke (Aus)||47||86||10||3946||329*||51.92||4|
|Graeme Smith (SA)||109||193||12||8659||277||47.83||4|
Of Kohli’s last ten 50-plus scores, five have been double-centuries and three have been hundreds. In all, the Indian captain has 19 Test centuries to go with 14 half-centuries, with a fifty-to-hundred conversion rate of 57.58%. Among those with a minimum of 15 Test tons, Kohli’s conversion rate is second only to Don Bradman (69.05%), who amassed 29 centuries and 13 half-centuries in his 52-Test career.
During his innings, Kohli also surpassed Sunil Gavaskar’s record of 11 Test tons as Indian captain.
Most Test hundreds for India as captain
|Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi||40||73||2||2424||203*||34.14||5|
Strangely, no Indian batsman in the match was dismissed for a double-figure scores. Out of eight players who batted, four fetched single-digit scores, while the other four – M Vijay (128), Cheteshwar Pujara (143), Kohli and Rohit Sharma (102 not out) – went on to cross the three-figure mark.
This was just the third time when four Indian batsmen scored a century in the same innings. Australia and Pakistan hold the record for five centurions each in an innings against West Indies and Bangladesh in 1955 and 2001 respectively.
Most Test hundreds in an innings for India
|4||Sri Lanka||Nagpur||November 24, 2017|
|4||South Africa||Kolkata||February 14, 2010|
|4||Bangladesh||Dhaka||May 25, 2007|
During Sri Lanka’s first innings, Dimuth Karunaratne became the second batsman to complete 1000 Test runs this calendar year, behind Dean Elgar. Soon, Pujara joined the list and by the end of his innings, was sitting at the second place with 1068 runs. Pujara’s batting average of 71.20 is the highest among those with a minimum of 500 runs this year.
Most Test runs in 2017
|Dean Elgar (SA)||11||20||0||1097||199||54.85||5|
|Cheteshwar Pujara (Ind)||10||16||1||1068||202||71.20||4|
|Dimuth Karunaratne (SL)||12||24||0||1018||196||42.41||3|
|Hashim Amla (SA)||11||20||1||942||137||49.57||3|
|Steven Smith (Aus)||8||15||2||842||178*||64.76||4|