Sri Lanka Test captain Dimuth Karunaratne has praised the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) decision to allow a 50% crowd for the first Test match against India, which begins on Friday, March 4 at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium in Mohali. The match has heightened interest because it will be former India captain Virat Kohli’s 100th Test. Due to the pandemic, the BCCI initially decided to host the game behind closed doors, but later changed their stance by allowing the Punjab Cricket Association to host the match with a partial crowd occupancy.
The Sri Lankan praised the BCCI for allowing spectators to witness Kohli’s historic match. Kohli is regarded as one of the game’s modern-day greats, and his achievements on the field have been lauded by many former and current cricketers.
“I came to know it is Virat’s 100th Test. A good decision from the BCCI to allow a 50 percent crowd,” Karunaratne said.
Kohli made his Test debut against the West Indies in 2011 and the rest, as they say, is history. In the long format, he has scored 7,962 runs at an impressive average of 50.29. He is also India’s most successful Test captain, having won 40 of 68 matches.
The first Test will also be Sri Lanka’s 300th Test match. Karunaratne, 33, also expressed his pride in leading the team in its historic Test, saying that he would put his best foot forward to help his country achieve the best possible result. In India, Sri Lanka has never won a Test series.
“That’s a great feeling…captaining in the country’s 300th Test. I did not expect it. It is a great honor for me. I will try my best to give the best result for Sri Lanka,” he added.
Sri Lanka made their debut as a Test-playing nation in 1982 and have won 95 matches, lost 113, and drawn 91. The Mohali Test will also mark the debut of ace India opener Rohit Sharma as the country’s Test captain.