At Vadodara, November 12, 2005. India won by five wickets. Toss: Sri Lanka.
Another comprehensive victory rounded off a wonderful campaign for India, who took the series 6-1. Sri Lanka left out Jayasuriya, after only 85 runs in the first six matches, but still slipped to 85 for five before Atapattu and Arnold orchestrated a rescue act, making light of the two-paced pitch to add 133 at better than a run a ball. The final total of 244 was a recovery of sorts, but never looked likely to trouble India once Sehwag and Tendulkar gave them a sound start, reaching 50 inside eight overs. Then came the main course: Dhoni plundered a still Murali-less attack, zooming to 80 off 73 balls, giving him 346 runs in the series at 115.33, including 28 fours and 17 sixes. Dravid, who topped even that average with 312 runs at 156, steered his side home.
Man of the Match: I. K. Pathan. Man of the Series: M. S. Dhoni.
Ramakrishnan Kaushik is a journalist with the Deccan Herald in Bangalore.