Sri Lankans well set for Series win
Sri Lanka made steady progress towards setting the visiting New
Zealand team a tough fourth innings target while dominating the third
days play in the second and final cricket test match which continued at
the SSC ground in Maitland Place yesterday.
After having enjoyed a good 182 run first innings lead the home side
then batted the Kiwis out of the game by reaching an impressive 157 for
2 in their second innings. The Lankans have now extended their overall
lead to a formidable 339 runs with eight wickets still in hand.
After the openers had again failed to make an impact skipper Kumar
Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardena took over the responsibilities and
batted with great authority before play was halted early due to heavy
rain with 11.4 overs still remaining for the day.
Sangakkara was unbeaten on 64 having completed his 33rd test half
century in a spectacular manner where he took a four and a six in
successive deliveries from the bowling of spinner Jeetan Patel. He has
so far put on 68 runs for the unfinished third wicket together with
Sri Lanka of course got off to a promising start with the openers
putting on 56 runs from 15.2 overs. Both Tillekeratne Dilshan and
Tharanga Paranavithana made good starts but could not convert them into
a big score.
However Paranavithana could consider rather unfortunate as he became
a poor victim of another umpiring blunder.
The 27 year old left hander was progressing slowly and cautiously,
looked set for his first substantial innings of the series but was
incorrectly ruled out caught behind by Darrel Harper when he clearly
missed a sweep down the pads.
Paranavithana had done all the initial hard work having occupied the
crease for a good two hours while stroking three boundaries. This was
after an overconfident Tillekeratne Dilshan had brought his downfall
while attempting to hoist spinner Jeetan Patel over long on. Dilshan’s
42 ball 33 included two boundaries.
Earlier New Zealand successfully avoided the follow on thanks to some
stubborn batting from their low order and sloppy fielding from the home
side. Brendon McCullum should have been dismissed on 13 twice in one
over but Tharanga Paranavitana grassed a catch at silly point, his
second drop of the game, and Thilan Samaraweera missed a low chance to
his left at second slip.
Even then it was McCullum who was the first to make his exit when he
edged a Muralitharan doosra to give Mahela Jayawardene his 150th catch
in Test matches. In contrast Ross Taylor stuck to a bat-and-pad policy
against the spinners who received a great amount of turn and bounce.
Having added 11 runs to his overnight score in 37 deliveries, Taylor
fell for a well compiled 81 and New Zealand were in real danger of
facing the follow on with just three wickets in hand. Taylor’s innings
lasted for just over three hours faced 155 deliveries and struck ten
However the pair of skipper Daniel Vettori and Jacob Oram rebuilt the
innings and took them through safely while adding 43 useful runs for the
eighth wicket. Vettori played positively while sweeping the spinners for
singles and two while Oram struck three boundaries during his one hour
stay at the crease.
This partnership certainly frustrated the home side before
Tillekeratne Dilshan made the breakthrough following an intelligent
bowling change. But the bulk of the bowling was done by the two spinners
Muttiah Muralitharan and Rangana Herath who shared six wickets between
1st innings 416
T. Mcintosh lbw b Prasad 5
M. Guptill c Muralitharan b Thushara 35
D. Flynn c P. Jayawardene b Thushara 13
R. Taylor c P. Jayawardene b Herath 81
J. Ryder c Paranavitana b Herath 23
J. Patel c M. Jayawardene b Muralitharan 1
B. McCullum c M. Jayawardene b Muralitharan 18
J. Oram c Kapugedera b Herath 24
D. Vettori c Kapugedera b Dilshan 23
I. O’Brien lbw b Muralitharan 4
C. Martin not out 0
Extras: (lb3, w2, nb2) 7
TOTAL (all out, 77.4 overs) 234
Fall of wickets: 1-14 (McIntosh), 2-49 (Flynn), 3-63 (Guptill), 4-148 (Ryder), 5-149 (Patel),
6-183 (McCullum), 7-183 (McCullum), 8-226 (Vettori), 9-234 (Oram), 10-234 (O’Brien).
Bowling: Dilshan 3-0-12-1, Thushara 9-2-37-2 (nb2, w1), Prasad 6-0-41-1 (w1),
Herath 34-11-70-3, Muralitharan 25.4-2-71-3.
SRI LANKA 2nd innings
T. Dilshan c Guptill b Patel 33
T. Paranavitana c McCullum b Vettori 34
K. Sangakkara not out 64
M. Jayawardene not out 23
Extras: (w1, nb2) 3
TOTAL (for 2 wkts, 45.2 overs) 157
Fall of wickets: 1-56 (Dilshan), 2-89 (Paranavitana).
Bowling: Vettori 14-2-36-1, O’Brien 8-1-41-0 (nb2, w1), Martin 5-0-13-0, Patel 18.2-2-67-1.