Sri Lanka’s bowlers could do very little in the face of some resolute batting by India who finished the first day of the first cricket Test at 399 for 3 here at the Galle International Cricket Stadium on Wednesday.
Opener Shikhar Dhawan led the Indian onslaught with a pulverizing 190 that had 31 fours followed by Cheteshwar Pujara finishing the day with an unbeaten 144 as Sri Lankan fast bowler Nuwan Pradeep Fernando took the only three wickets to fall on the day.
It was smooth sailing for the Indians after skipper Virat Kholi won the toss and decided to bat first on a hot sunny day with the pitch playing true.
Dhawan had only one blemish when on 31 he was dropped by Asela Gunaratne in the slip cordon but the flamboyant left-hander stroked the ball at will to all corners of the ground to put India on course for a big first innings total.
Gunaratne injured his left thumb in the process and did not play any further part in the match and is likely to miss the entire contest.
Pujara was however the mainstay in the Indian batting and steered the team well and truly with some judicious stroke-play to add a further 113 runs for the fourth wicket with Ajinkya Rahane who was unbeaten on 35.
Pujara also associated in a 253-run stand for the second wicket with Dhawan.
Veteran spinner Rangana Herath had no success whatsoever conceding 92 runs off 24 overs.
Kholi (3) and Abhinar Mukund (12) were the other two batsmen to be dismissed.