India beat Sri Lanka by 8 wickets, clinch series
Visakhapatnam: Shikhar Dhawan struck a sublime hundred in the nick of time as India delivered yet again in a series decider to beat Sri Lanka by seven wickets in the third ODI and record their eighth successive win in a bilateral contest.
India raced to the 216-run target in 32.1 overs with Dhawan (100 n.o. off 85) completing his 12th ODI ton in what turned out to be the penultimate over of the match.
Shreyas Iyer made a significant 65 off 63 balls, his second successive half century, but missed on the opportunity of scoring a hundred in a winning cause. Dinesh Karthik remained unbeaten on 26 alongside Dhawan and hit the winning runs.
The quick run chase came after a Sri Lankan collapse that saw them getting all out for 215 from a promising 160 for two.
The visitors failed to apply themselves on a pitch that offered decent turn as Indian spinners Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav picked up three wickets apiece.
With the professional performance tonight, India won their sixth ODI series of the year and eighth in a row since July 2016.
Sri Lanka, on the other hand, were consigned to yet another defeat in a rather miserable year in which they have won only five matches.
The hundred was there for the taking and Dhawan grabbed the opportunity with both hands.
During the course of his match-winning knock, Dhawan crossed the 4,000-run barrier in his 96th ODI. He hit 13 boundaries and two sixes overall as he toyed with the Sri Lankan attack.
Iyer reached his second ODI fifty in 44 balls before throwing his wicket away by attempting a big shot off Thisara Perara only to sky a catch to Suranga Lakmal at mid-on.
The Mumbai batsman survived two dropped chances, when on 25 and 38. In the first instance, Angelo Matthews grassed a catch at slip off Sachith Pathirana's first delivery and the second life came when Akila Dhananjaya couldn't hold on to a tough chance at the deep third-man when on 38.
India skipper Rohit Sharma was not able to reproduce his Mohali magic here as he fell in the fourth over after hitting a big six off Akila Dhananjaya.
The leggie got his googly to come in sharply and deceive Sharma much to the disappointment of the crowd. The captain made just seven after having decimated the Lanka attack in Mohali with a brilliant double ton.
Dhawan and Iyer made light of the early departure of their skipper and put on 135 runs in 19 overs to put India on the road to victory.
Iyer, who scored his maiden ODI fifty at Mohali, hit a flurry of boundaries after a cautious start and hoisted Pathirana for six over long-on.