India coasted to a five-wicket win in the 3rd Test at the P Sara Oval in Colombo courtesy of a 109-run partnership between Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman. The visitors posted their fourth Test win on Sri Lankan soil by getting to the target of 257 in the 69th over just a few minutes prior to Tea. Laxman cracked an unbeaten 103 from 149 balls (with a dozen fours) to pick up the Man of the Match. He had another good partnership with the young Suresh Raina today to take India home. Raina played a breezy cameo of 41* from 45 balls which included the winning six off Welegedara.
The morning session saw an early exit of the night watchman Ishant Sharma which placed India in a miserable state at 62 for 4. Under severe pressure, entered VVS Laxman to battle it out along with Sachin Tendulkar. The match which was heavily tilted in Sri Lanka’s favour swung India’s way after Dilshan fielding at shortleg failed to latch onto a sharp catch offered by Tendulkar off Suraj Randiv. From that point, Tendulkar was deteremined to see through India and by lunch got India to a solid 145 for 4.
Sri Lanka could break the fifth wicket stand after lunch when Tendulkar (54 from 122 balls with 3 fours) gloved a paddle sweep to Prasanna Jayawardene. It was Suraj Randiv again getting a wicket to clinch his maiden fifer. With India needing 86 to win, Suresh Raina walked in with an aggressive mindset. Laxman who was having trouble with his lower back got Sehwag to do the running and that changed the momentum for India. Sehwag ran hard with Raina to quickly cut down the target while every now and then the boundaries flowed at both the ends.
The hosts were forced to surrender the match just a few minutes before lunch as Laxman (103* from 149 balls with 12 fours) raced away to a 16th test match hundred. Suresh Raina played his big shots to finish with an unbeaten 41 from 45 balls. He wrapped up the Test match with a heave over wide long on for a six off pace bowler Welegedara. While Laxman got the Man of the Match, his team mate Virender Sehwag got the Man of the Series.