India began at their overnight score of 50 for 2 only to lose Virat Kohli (18) and Rohit Sharma (26), both of whom perished after getting sound starts. Kohli was dismissed by Sri Lankan skipper Angelo Mathews who induced an edge from him to be caught by wicketkeeper Kushal Perera. He was sent to the pavilion fairly quickly, in the ninth over of the innings, when, after a 50-run third wicket partnership with opener Cheteshwar Pujara, he flashed at a wide delivery outside his off stump to give an easy chance behind the stumps.

Rohit joined Pujara and they batted with caution, wary of the moving delivery. Pujara grew in confidence as his duration at the crease increased and reached his fifty in the 43rd over. He batted patiently to negotiate the early morning bowling venom of the hosts. He and Rohit put together a 55-run third wicket stand but their effort was undone just at the stroke of lunch when the latter edged a moving ball to the first slip.

India were reduced to 119 fir 4 in 45.5 overs at lunch. India scored only 69 runs in 30.5 overs in the morning session, losing those two crucial wickets in the process. It went from bad to worse when play resumed after lunch with all-rounder Stuart Binny (0) getting out on the first ball of the post-lunch session.

Debutant Naman Ojha (21) forged a 54-run stand for the sixth wicket with Pujara but perished when things began to look up for India. Ravichandran Ashwin’s (5) quick dismissal increased India’s troubles as they lost the seventh wicket for 180 runs.

But from there Pujara, wit Amit Mishra in tow, began the revival process. He remained unmoved by the flurry of wickets and played well all around the park — especially elegant while playing the cut shots. The 27-year-old cut down his strokes as he moved near the three-figure mark even as Mishra played freely. He reached his century in 214 deliveries with the help of nine fours and later added another four boundaries. Pujara also got a reprieve at his personal score of 117 as Nuwan Pradeep dropped a catch at fine-leg off a Mathews delivery, IANS reported.

(Video: Sony Six)