Dinuth Wellalage wiped out India’s Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul to register his maiden five-wicket haul for Sri Lanka in ODIs at the Asia Cup 2023 Super Four match at the R Premadasa stadium in Colombo on Tuesday.
The 20-year-old left-arm spinner put a stop to India’s fast start by dismissing Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma in three overs. He added the wickets of KL Rahul and Hardik Pandya to complete his first ODI fifer.
India had sped to 80 for no loss in 11 overs before Wellalage came onto the attack. He dismissed Gill with his first ball, uprooting his off stump after pitching it on leg.
Kohli was the next to go, providing an easy catch to short midwicket. Rohit was dismissed the following over, with the ball not spinning and keeping very low to rattle the stumps.
In his second spell, he accepted a return catch off KL Rahul and nicked off Hardik to the wicket keeper, which was confirmed after a Sri Lanka DRS review.
On a slow, turning pitch, the left-armer got the ball to turn square off the surface, as evident in the Gill dismissal. He also used his arm ball to perfection, dismissing Rohit off a straighter one that didn’t bounce.
Wellalage first rose to prominence during the 2022 U19 World Cup captaining Sri Lanka. He contributed with both bat and ball during the tournament ending up as the highest wicket taker.
He picked up 17 wickets in six matches during the tournament at an impressive average of 13.58. He scored 264 runs in the tournament as well at an average of 44, ending up as Sri Lanka’s highest run scorer.
The young spinner made his ODI debut against Australia in June 2022 at Pallekele, where he picked up two wickets in a two-wicket loss.
He also played a solitary test for his country, against Pakistan in Galle in July 2022.
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