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Saturday, December 5, 2009

Cricket-India on top rankings

Sun Dec 6, 2009

India won the final test against Sri Lanka by an innings and 24 runs on Sunday to clinch the three-match series 2-0 and secure their place at the top of the test rankings for the first time.

Sri Lanka may have thwarted India through the fourth day, but Zaheer Khan sliced through the remaining four wickets to take India to a 2-0 series win and the No. 1 spot in the ICC rankings. Zaheer started with a ripper in the first over to get rid of Kumar Sangakkar and finished his best performance of the series with his eighth five-wicket haul. This was the third time in the last four years that India had won two matches in a row; two of those braces came against Sri Lanka.

In comparison with day four, the end came swift. Sangakkara was yet to get his eye in again when Zaheer bowled the perfect left-armer's outswinger that took the edge. After that it was all a matter of time: both Rangana Herath and Nuwan Kulasekara succumbed to sharp short deliveries from Zaheer. Muttiah Muralitharan scored a quick 14 but edged Harbhajan Singh to MS Dhoni to kick off India's celebrations.

India wrapped up the tail in 7.4 overs to seal a 2-0 series victory that saw them displace South Africa at the top of the test rankings.

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