Millennium Post

Stuart Broad strikes as Sri Lanka slump

Stuart Broad sparked a Sri Lanka top-order collapse as England took charge of the first cricket Test at Headingley on Friday. Sri Lanka were 43 for three at tea on the second day, 255 runs adrift of England’s first innings 298 which featured Jonathan Bairstow’s 140 on his Yorkshire home ground.

Dinesh Chandimal and Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews were both 15 not out in testing, overcast conditions. Broad, the world’s number one-ranked Test bowler, needed just 12 balls to take his first wicket on Friday.

Coming from round the wicket, Broad had Dimuth Karunaratne out for a duck as the left-handed opener edged an excellent delivery that nipped away through to wicket-keeper Bairstow.

Kaushal Silva, Sri Lanka’s other opener, was caught behind off a sharply rising ball from James Anderson for 11.

Kusal Mendis, like Karunaratne, fell for a duck when he edged Broad and gave Bairstow his third routine catch of the innings. Sri Lanka were now 12 for three, with Broad having taken two wickets for no runs in three balls.

Those early Sri Lankan wickets also highlighted the value of Bairstow’s runs -- and how costly it had been for Sri Lanka to drop him on 70, half of his eventual score.

Mathews -- whose Test-best 160 laid the platform for Sri Lanka’s win at Headingley two years ago that clinched their first series win in England -- defiantly cut Broad through point for four. But he was almost undone by the last ball before tea, with occasional medium-pacer James Vince producing a spiteful delivery that leapt off a good length. England resumed on 171 for five, having collapsed to 83 for five on Thursday.

Alex Hales was 71 not out, with Bairstow unbeaten on 54 after Sri Lanka medium-pacer Dasun Shanaka had taken three top-order wickets on Test debut. Bairstow was soon into his stride, with the best of his shots on Friday an on-driven four off Shanaka. It was not long before he had outscored Hales, who was 43 not out when Bairstow came in. Bairstow, however should have been out when Nuwan Pradeep dropped a caught and bowled chance off a checked drive.

Brief Score: England 298 Sri Lanka 75/4 (25.0 ov), trailed by 223 runs with 6 wickets left
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