GALLE, August 3, 2008 (AFP) – Skipper Anil Kumble on Sunday lauded opener Virender Sehwag and teenage paceman Ishant Sharma for playing key roles in India’s series-levelling victory against Sri Lanka here. India, who lost the opening match of the three-Test series by an innings and 239 runs in Colombo, came back strongly to win the second game by 170 runs with a day to spare.
The final Test starts in Colombo on August 8.
Sri Lanka were shot out for 136 chasing a 307-run target, with Sharma doing the early damage to finish with 3-20 off 15 overs.
“I think the opening partnerships in both the innings was a turning point of the match. Sehwag getting a double-hundred and giving fantastic starts with Gautam Gambhir was very important,” Kumble said.
Sehwag and Gambhir put on 167 for the opening wicket in the first innings and 90 in the second.
Sehwag made an unbeaten 201 and 50, while Gambhir scored successive half-centuries.
“He (Sehwag) is a very good player and the way he scored runs in both the innings was great. Getting 201 in a total of 329 is something amazing,” said the Indian captain.
“It was also amazing the way Harbhajan Singh bowled in both the innings and then I