India vs Sri Lanka “Gave Me Lot Of Confidence”: Axar Patel Credits This Teammate For His Success

Following his side’s 91-run win over Sri Lanka in the third T20I, Indian all-rounder Axar Patel said that he feels happier when his side benefits from his batting, and skipper Hardik Pandya gave him the confidence to play freely. Suryakumar Yadav’s blistering knock of 112 combined with a clinical performance of bowlers helped India register a thumping 91-run win over Sri Lanka in the third and final T20I to clinch the three-match series 2-1 here at the Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium on Saturday.

“Feel happier when the team benefits from my batting (when compared to bowling). Did not do anything different for this series, just that the captain gave me a lot of confidence in the dugout. He tells me to play freely and tells me that he is there to protect me. We do a lot of planning during team meetings but sometimes things do go wrong and I just focus on doing my plans properly,” said Axar in a post-match presentation.

Axar Patel walked away with the ‘Man of the Series’ award for his all-around efforts. He scored 117 runs in three innings at an average of 117.00 and a strike rate of 195.00. This also includes a fighting knock of 65 runs in the second T20I in a losing cause. He provided vital cameos for his side in every match with his willow.

He also took three wickets in three matches at an average of 24.66 and an economy rate of 7.40.

With this, India has captured the three-match T20I series by 2-1.

India won the toss and elected to bat first. After Men in Blue lost Ishan Kishan (1) early, a quick cameo from Rahul Tripathi brought back some momentum to the innings. He scored 35 off just 16 balls, with five boundaries and two sixes. Shubman Gill was the anchor throughout.

Following Rahul’s dismissal, India was already beyond the 50-run mark in their powerplay. Suryakumar Yadav continued his red-hot form, smashing Lankan bowlers left and right. Gill was dismissed for 46 off 36 balls, ending a quickfire 111-run stand in just 53 balls.

Suryakumar brought up his third T20I ton in just 45 balls and ended the innings at 112* off 51 balls, with seven fours and nine sixes. Axar Patel (21*) also provided a nice cameo to power India to 228/5 in their 20 overs.

Dilshan Madushanka (2/55) was the pick of bowlers for visitors. Chamika Karunaratne, Wanindu Hasaranga, Kasun Rajitha got a wicket each.

Chasing 229, openers Kusal Mendis (23) and Pathum Nissanka (15) provided a good start to the visitors and they scored 44 in 4.5 overs before Axar trapped Kusal.

Following this dismissal, Lanka could not bounce back into the game and lost wickets consistently. Only Dhananjay de Silva (22) and skipper Dasun Shanaka (23) crossed the 20-run mark.

Lanka was bundled out for just 137 runs in 16.4 overs. Arshdeep Singh (3/20) impressed with the ball after an off-day at work in the 2nd T20I. Pandya, Yuzvendra Chahal and Umran Malik took two wickets each while Axar got one.

Suryakumar was adjudged as ‘Man of the Match’ for his match-winning ton.

The three-match ODI series between both sides will start from January 10.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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