Sri Lanka Fight Back After Bowling England Out For 421

Sri Lanka Fight Back After Bowling England Out For 421

17 January 2021 09:55 pm

1st Test - Sri Lanka Vs England -  Galle - Day 3  

Sri Lanka fought back to be 156 for 2 wickets at the end of play after they bowled out England for 421 on day three of the 1st test in the Daraz powered two test series at the Galle esplanade yesterday.

Sri Lanka still have their other opener in Lahiru Thirimanne who remained not out on 78 and also 8 wickets in the bag, as they still trail England by 130 runs going into day 3.

It may take a monumental feat for Sri Lanka to first wipe out the deficit and then post a total that they could defend in the fourth innings.

Sri Lanka may take some inspiration from a similar situation they found themselves in, when earlier in an encounter with India in 2015, they went on to bundle out their sub continental neighbors India for 112 runs in the last innings and win that match.

However, this time around the islanders will have battle two good spinners in Dom Bess who already took 5 wickets in the first innings and left arm spinner Jack Leach, who is a handful himself as he gets deliveries to drift and also gets good turn and bounce.

Earlier in the day, England resumed with Root and Butler and it did not take too long for them to continue on their merry way.

In just the third ball of the day Root hit a glorious cover drive off paceman Asitha Fernando and shortly thereafter Jos Butler also did join his skipper in thumping the ball all around.

Butler, a master at reverse sweeping the ball, used his bat more as a broom and reverse swept both Dilruwan Perera and Lasith Embuldeniya for two boundaries.

He then rocked back and lofted another Embuldeniya delivery into the vacant mid-wicket region for another four.

Meanwhile skipper Root who kept accumulating his runs then went onto hit a straight lofted drive off Dilruwan Perera for a six to take him onto 196. 

However, just prior to Root reaching his double century off a slog sweep for four off Embuldeniya, Sri Lanka's paceman Asitha Fernando struck a double blow. 

He was in fact on a hat trick when he first got one to seam away from Butler to have him caught behind and then bowled an absolute beauty, to swing one into the left hander Sam Curran and have him castled. 

England went onto lose their last six wickets for the addition of only 49 runs and be all out for 421 runs.

This after the Root and Butler partnership was broken when the scoreboard read 372 for 4.

Sri Lanka's off spinner Dilruwan Perera snapped up the wickets of Jack Leach, Mark Wood and skipper Root who was the last man out, to end with figures of 4 for 109 off 36.1 overs.

Sri Lanka trailed England by 286 runs as they came out to bat a second time around.

Kusal Perera and Lahiru Thirimanne bided their time and strung together a useful century stand before Kusal Perera picked the lone fielder on the cover point boundary off a Sam Curran bouncer, to be out for 62.

Perera made his runs off 109 balls hitting a single six and five boundaries.

In walked Kusal Mendis who was on the threshold of equaling a world record for registering the most number of consecutive ducks in test cricket.

He had already registered a national record for the most number of consecutive ducks (4) scored in his last four innings. 

However in a gesture of true sportsmanship it was the English skipper Joe Root who walked up to the Sri Lankan batsman struggling for form and gave him a fist bump. 

Earlier it was nice to see Root also acknowledging and waving to his lone English spectator who was perched on the Galle Fort rampart, when he completed his double century.

Mendis finally got off the mark and went on to score 15 runs before he was undone by a Jack Welsh ripper to be caught behind just before the end of play.