Sanga fails in farewell, Lankans end Day 2 at 140/3
Retiring legend Kumar Sangakkara failed to get a big knock in his swansong Test appearance but Sri Lanka overcame an early jolt to reach 140/3 after dismissing India for 393 in the first innings of the second cricket Test here on Friday.
Resuming at the overnight score of 319/6, India were bowled out shortly after the lunch break and the hosts <g data-gr-id="42">treaded</g> cautiously to keep the match on an even keel at the end of the second day’s play.
Opener Kaushal Silva (51 off 117 balls) played a watchful innings to ensure that the early loss of fellow opener Dimuth Karunaratne did not trigger a top-order collapse. His dismissal towards the fag end of the day, however, put the side slightly on the <g data-gr-id="48">backfoot</g> given that the home team is still 253 runs behind. However, it did not quite turn out to be a fairytale ending for the veteran batsman, who was dismissed by off- spinner Ravichandran Ashwin for 32 after facing 87 deliveries.
After Sangakkara’s departure, Lahiru Thirimanne (28 batting) and Silva added 39 runs for the third wicket before India took the slight edge by <g data-gr-id="43">snaring</g> the latter. When stumps were drawn for the day, Thirimanne and skipper Angelo Mathews (19) were holding <g data-gr-id="45">fort</g> for the Lankans. Earlier, resuming at the overnight score, India were bowled three overs after lunch as Rangana Herath took 4/81.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha, who had scored a 60 in the first Test, played a 56-run knock to take India past the 350 figure.
The Indians scored at a slow pace in the morning session as Saha shepherded the lower order to avoid a below-par total in the first innings of this match. The visiting side could pull off a mere 67 runs in this first session of play in 23.4 overs.
The Indians <g data-gr-id="38">were in fact</g> lucky to survive on more than one occasion. Saha, on his previous evening’s score of 19, was fortunate not to be bowled off the seventh ball of the morning.
Dhammika Prasad (2-84) was the unlucky bowler as the ball kissed the off-stump but didn’t dislodge the bail. Six balls later, Lanka did get their first wicket of the morning, with R Ashwin (2) hitting Angelo Mathews (2-24) straight to short extra cover.
Saha survived another close call in the 91st over, Prasad again the unlucky bowler, as his loose shot didn’t quite carry enough to the keeper. TV replays proved sufficient doubt to rule the batsman not out who still hadn’t added a single run to his overnight score. He finally got going on the 14th ball he faced while Amit Mishra (24 runs, 50 balls, three fours) joined him at the other end.
The latter too was lucky to survive, without opening his account off 10 deliveries, when in the 94th over, umpire Bruce Oxenford failed to detect a faint edge to the keeper with Mathews the one to miss out on a wicket this time. With these many lives given, it was no surprise that the batsmen decided to settle down and curb their <g data-gr-id="46">shots,</g> and run scoring was very slow as a result.
Saha and Mishra built a sluggish partnership of 46 runs for the eighth wicket and it helped India cross the 350-mark in the 101st over of the innings.
Just as Mishra looked to open up a bit, he was dismissed caught behind, with Dushmantha Chameera (2-72) getting the breakthrough in the 106th over. Saha then reached his second Test fifty off 106 balls and with Ishant for <g data-gr-id="41">company</g>, avoided further loss until lunch.
India 1st innings: 393 all out (starting ahead of overnight 319/6) Saha lbw b Herath 56 Ashwin c Silva b Mathews 2 Mishra c Chandimal b <g data-gr-id="62">Chameera</g> 24 Ishant lbw b Herath 2 Umesh not out 2 Extras: (B-8 LB-13 W-4 NB-3) 28 FoW: 1/4 2/12 3/176 4/231 5/267 6/319 7/321 8/367 9/386 Bowling: Prasad 24-7-84-2, Mathews 15-7-24-2, <g data-gr-id="63">Chameera</g> 20-2-72-2, Herath 25-3-81-4, Kaushal 30-2-111-0.
Sri Lanka 1st innings: Karunaratne lbw b Yadav 1 Silva c Ashwin b Mishra 51 Sangakkara c Rahane b Ashwin 32 Thirimanne batting 28 Mathews batting 19 Extras (B-2, LB-3, NB-4) 9 Total (For 3 wickets in 53 overs) 140 FoW: 1-1, 2-75, 3-114. Bowling: Ishant 10-2-31-0, Umesh 11-5-34-1, S Binny 11-3-24-0, Ashwin 14-2-37-1, Mishra 7-1-9-1