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We thought we had enough runs on the board, Kohli says after shocking loss to Sri Lanka

Friday, Jun 9, 2017,11:08 IST By joji A A A

London | India captain Virat Kohli said he expected his bowlers to defend 321 but Sri Lanka batted exceptionally well to take the game away from the defending champions in the Champions Trophy here Thursday.
“We felt we had enough on the board, we trusted out bowlers, but Sri Lanka were pretty good,” Kohli said at the post-match presentation here today.
“They kept the momentum through the innings, they picked their areas to hit and executed really well.
“There’s always hindsight. I thought we bowled decently. But when you don’t execute properly, there is always food for thought. Here you have to give credit to the other team,” Kohli added.
Pedestrian bowling performance from defending champions India saw them slump to an unexpected seven-wicket defeat against Sri Lanka in a high-scoring ICC Champions Trophy Group B contest.
Riding on Shikhar Dhawan’s 125 and half-centuries from Rohit Sharma and Mahendra Singh Dhoni, India piled up a 321 for 6 only to be stunned by unfancied Lankan batting line-up that produced a splendid batting show to knock off the runs in 48.4 overs.
Danushka Gunathilaka (76 off 72 balls) and Kusal Mendis (89 off 93) added 159 runs to lay the platform before skipper Angelo Mathews (52 no off 44 balls) coolly finished off the job in company of Kusal Janith Perera (47 retired hurt) and Asela Gunaratne (34 no off 21 balls).
Arguably, the biggest upset of the tournament also threw the group wide open with all four teams – India, Pakistan, South Africa and Sri Lanka in with a chance to qualify.
India now must beat South Africa on Sunday in order to qualify for the semifinals.
Angelo Mathews, who himself scored an unbeaten 52 in his comeback game, rated the win as one of top wins of his times.
“It’s one of the top wins, to beat India. It was a fantastic wicket,” said Mathews.
“The bowlers did brilliantly to restrict India to 321.
It’s a very chaseable target. I tried to hit as many balls in the nets as possible, it makes you feel good and that helped me come back from injury.
“Wasn’t easy for Danushka Gunathilaka to walk into the side and bat like how he did. Kusal Mendis is a great player, and Kusal Perera also batted really well.
“Those partnerships were crucial. It’s a must-win game (Sri Lanka against Pakistan, and India versus South Africa) for all of us in the group. Not many people expected us to win and that took a lot of pressure off us,” he added.

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