Dilshan (123 n.o.) helps Lanka declare at 259-4
Dashing opener Tilleratne Dilshan hammered a blazing century as Sri
Lanka took a huge step closer towards winning the opening cricket Test
match against the visiting New Zealand team at the Galle International
Dilshan powered his way to score an unbeaten 123 runs which enabled
the home side to declare their second innings at 259 for 4 by tea on the
fourth day while setting their opponents an imposing victory target of
412 runs to be made from four sessions.
New Zealand of course suffered an early setback in their attempt to
survive but Mark Guptil and Ross Taylor saw them through the rest of the
evening before reaching 30 for 1 when bad light halted play at 5.00 p.m.
with 13 overs still remaining.
This was a repeat performance from Dilshan who also made a
swashbuckling 92 in the first innings after been promoted to open the
innings for the first time in a test match. This time the situation was
tailor made for him as Sri Lanka had earlier built up a lead of 153 runs
by dismissing the visitors for 299 in the first innings.
The aggressive right hander simply carried on from where he left on
the opening day of the match by unleashing a series of strokes that
completely took the game away from the Kiwis. Dilshan also joined a
select band of players to have made a century and a ninety in a test
match for his country.
Earlier Duleep Mendis scored 111 and 94 against England at Lords in
1984, Aravinda de Silva made 96 and 123 against New Zealand in Auckland
in 1991 and Kumar Sangakkara had the satisfaction of compiling 92 and
152 against England at the Asgiriya Stadium in 2007.
Even then Dilshan will be quite disappointed for been dismissed for
92 in the first innings because he could have ended up with twin
centuries in this match easily.
Nevertheless this was a fantastic batting performance from a dynamic
player who seems to have cemented his place as the opening batsman of
the Sri Lankan team.
Once he had seen the opening he simply launched into the New Zealand
attack with a vengeance and raced to his ninth test century from 115
deliveries inclusive of one six and nine boundaries.
He went on to add three more fours to his tally and was associated in
an unfinished fifth wicket stand of 54 runs from just 45 deliveries with
But it was the 101 runs second wicket partnership between skipper
Kumar Sangakkara and Tillekeratne Dislahn that really set the pace for
Sri Lanka’s impressive second innings total.
This pair went about their task in a professional manner and
consolidated the position after losing Tharanga Paranavithana quite
Left hander Sangakkara certainly made amends for his first innings
failure by scoring a 65 ball 46 with the help of seven boundaries.
Former captain Mahela Jayawardena joined Dilshan and the pair put on a
further 54 runs for the third wicket in 52 minutes before Thilan
Samaraweera added the finishing touches in a spectacular manner.
The elegant middle order batsman nearly set the Stadium ablaze with a
15 ball 20 inclusive of two massive sixes in one over off Jeetan Patel
and another boundary. Earlier New Zealand extended their first innings
to a further 11 overs before been dismissed for 299 runs.
Muttiah Muralitharan added one more to his tally and completed 100
wickets at the Galle International Stadium having performed the same
feat at two other venues namely the SSC grounds (160 wickets) and at the
Asgiriya Stadium (117 wickets).
1ST INNINGS 452
J. Oram c sub b Muralitharan 12
D. Vettori b Thushara 42
I. O’Brien c P. Jayawardene b Muralitharan 9
C. Martin not out 2
Extras: (b6, lb5, w1, nb11) 23
Total (all out, 116 overs) 299
Fall of wickets: 1-45, 2-80, 3-129, 4-180, 5-188, 6-195, 7-223, 8-259, 9-290, 10-299.
Bowling: Kulasekara 10-2-41-1 (nb1), Thushara 23-2-81-4 (nb6, w1),
Mendis 39-8-85-1 (nb4), Muralitharan 42-10-73-4, Paranavitana 2-0-8-0.
T. Paranavitana c Taylor b O’Brien 5
T. Dilshan not out 123
K. Sangakkara run out 46
M. Jayawardene c and b Patel 27
T. Samaraweera c Taylor b Vettori 20
P. Jayawardene not out 30
Extras: (b5, lb3) 8
Total (for 4 wkts decl,49 overs) 259
Fall of wickets: 1-19, 2-120, 3-174, 4-205.
Bowling: Martin 5-1-25-0, O’Brien 8-1-45-1, Oram 5-0-31-0, Vettori 19-3-81-1, Patel 12-0-69-1.
M. Guptill not out 17
D. Flynn c M. Jayawardene b Kulasekara 0
R. Taylor not out 8
Extras: (b4, lb1) 5
Total (for one wkt, 13 overs) 30
Fall of wicket: 1-1 (Flynn).
Bowling: Kulasekara 3-0-10-1, Thushara 2-2-0-0, Mendis 4-1-9-0, Muralitharan 4-2-6-0.