Saturday, November 25, 2017

Bangladesh openers start well before Sri Lanka get quick wickets

  • Sports Correspondent,
    Published: 2017-03-08 12:36:35 BdST


A fine century stand between openers Tamim Iqbal and Soumya Sarkar gave Bangladesh a flying start in their response to a big Sri Lankan first innings total but quick wickets late on the second day dented them somewhat.

The Tigers were 133 for 2 at stumps, trailing Sri Lanka by 361 runs in the first innings at the Galle International Stadium on Wednesday.

Tamim (57) and Soumya (66 not out) appeared to be cruising smoothly in their stroke-filled 118-run opening partnership.  But 10 overs before the close of play, Tamim threw away his wicket.

Chinaman Lakshan Sandakan fired one down the leg side which appeared to brush something on its way to the gloves of wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella who appealed loudly. Tamim, however, aimlessly ran out of his crease allowing Dickwella to whip off the bails.

Mominul Haque (7) soon fell, trapped lbw in front by Dilruwan Perera before Soumya and Mushfiqur Rahim (1) safely saw the team through the remaining overs.

Earlier, young offspinner Mehedi Hasan Miraz grabbed four wickets as Bangladesh bowled Sri Lanka out for a massive 494.

Kusal Mendis’ splendid 194 powered Sri Lanka to the commanding total. He featured in two brilliant partnerships with Asela Gunaratne (85) and Niroshan Dickwella (75) on the way.

Perera (51) played well before the islanders were bundled out after lunch.

Mustafizur returned 2 for 68, including the scalp of Sri Lanka captain Rangana Herath (14), while Taskin Ahmed, Subashis Roy and Shakib Al Hasan snared a wicket each for the Tigers.

Sri Lanka resumed on an overnight 321 for 4 on the second day, Miraz grabbed the wicket of Mendis to give Bangladesh a much-needed breakthrough.

Mendis’ elegant career-best 285-ball 194 came to an end when he looked to reach his maiden Test double ton with a six but was left reaching for the pitch by Miraz with a drifter.

He holed out at long-on where Tamim Iqbal calmly lobbed it back into play from the edge of the boundary and stepped in to complete the catch

Having received a reprieve when he was yet to score the day before, Mendis also survived early in the day, on 175, when the fielder fine leg held on to a top-edge off Subashis Roy, whose no-ball allowed him to stay on the previous day, but stepped on the ropes to gift the batsman a six.

Before departing Mendis shared a 110-run fifth-wicket stand with Dickwella (75 off 76 balls) who perished soon after his partner.

Dickwella hit a brisk half-century at the other end to extend Sri Lanka’s dominance in the first session. The wicketkeeper-batsman reached his second Test half-century off 52 balls, cracking four boundaries and a six.

The duo resumed batting on an overnight 321 for 4 after Sri Lanka had won the toss on Tuesday.