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Sunday, 25 October 2015





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Sri Lanka ambushed by an alien

West Indies chasing a victory target of 244 were 20 for the loss of opener Kraigg Brathwaite when rain intervened around 2.30 pm and play was called off one hour later on the third day of the second Hero Sobers- Tissera trophy cricket Test at the P.Sara Oval yesterday.

West Indies wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin (R) and teammate Kraigg Brathwaite (C) celebrate after dismissing Sri Lankan batsman Kusal Perera during the third day of the second Test.

The Sri Lanka middle order batting was badly exposed once again when they collapsed alarmingly losing eight wickets for 130 runs in a session and a half as the West Indians found a most unlikely bowling hero in off spinner Kraigg Brathwaite, a stop gap bowler who knocked away the props that were holding up the structure taking 6 for 29 in 11.3 overs.

The 22-year old Brathwaite had only a wicket to go by from 23 Tests before the ball was thrown to him yesterday by skipper Jason Holder.

Play began on time in overcast conditions, but the sun came out partially to dispel the gloom. Left arm spinner Jomel Warrican on debut and pacemann Jerome Taylor started off and found conditions to their liking.

Possibly the pitch had sweated a little under the canvas coverings probably due to overnight rain and no doubt this gave the bowlers that little bit of extra life.

The watchful Kaushal Silva just added one run to his overnight 31 and helped Chandimal to add 29 runs before edging a turning leg-spinning ball to the slips for Blackwood to snap up the catch.

But Chandimal who was also struggling against Jerome Taylor failed to stay and was caught behind with both wickets falling at 84 with the overall lead just 121.

With the loss of Silva and Chandimal the Sri Lankans faced a crisis situation and it was left to skipper Mathews and newcomer Siriwardene to restore some order in the batting. Left hander Milinda Siriwardene who is turning out into a useful all-rounder stuck to his job admirably as he struck both spinners Jomel Warrican and Devendra Bishoo for straight sixes to ease the pressure and was visibly taking the aggressor’s role.

Mathews and Siriwardene posted the 50-run stand as the overall lead kept on moving. With lunch approaching and the score reading 151 for 5 and Siriwardena on 42 nearing his second fifty in the match, Brathwaite was introduced only to claim the wickets of Milinda Siriwardene and Kusal Perera in quick succession.

Siriwardene batted enterprisingly for his 42 facing sixty deliveries with three fours and two sixes while Perera’s subdued innings was cut short in the last over before lunch edging one to the keeper.

At lunch Sri Lanka were 165 for 6 with Mathews unbeaten on 31 with an overall lead of 202 with four wickets intact. But a dismal batting performance by the late middle order saw the off spinner Kraigg Brathwaite taking the last four wickets which made his final tally of 6 for 29 as the home team managed only 41 runs to their lunch time score of 165 for 6.

Herath, Mathews and Dilruwan Perera all perished to injudicious shots amid the steady off spinners of Brathwaite.

Herath went for his famous sweep and popped up a catch, Dilruwan Perera after clobbering a six over mid-wicket off Brathwaite went for a repetition and was caught the next ball at deep mid-wicket and the worst of all skipper Mathews after shouldering a major part of the batting indulged in a reverse sweep and top-edged the ball after scoring 46 facing 120 deliveries with three fours.

Brathwaite created a sensation becoming the only West Indian spinner to take six wickets in a Test in an innings on Sri Lankan soil. The previous best bowling figures by a West Indian was by CD Collymore (7 for 57) in Kingston, 2003.


Sri Lanka first innings 200 
West Indies first innings 163  

Sri Lanka second innings
D Karunaratne c Bishoo b Taylor 			00 
Kaushal Silva c Blackwood b Warrican 			32 
Kusal Mendis c Ramdin b Warrican  			39 
Dinesh Chandimal c Ramdin b Taylor 			12
Angelo Mathews c Blackwood b Brathwaite 		46
M Siriwardana c Blackwood b Brathwaite  		42
Kusal Perera c Ramdin b Brathwaite 			05
Rangana Herath c Blackwood b Brathwaite 		18
Dilruwan Perera c Roach b Brathwaite 			07
Dhammika Prasad not out 				01
Nuwan Pradeep c Blackwood b Brathwaite 			00
Extras: (b2 lb2)   					04
Total all out (75.3 overs) 			       206

Fall of wickets: 1-0 (Karunaratne), 2-55 (Mendis), 3-84 (Silva)
		 4-84 (Chandimal),5-151 (Siriwardena)
		 6- 165 (Kusal Perera, 7-195 (Herath)
		 8-203 (D Perera),9-206 (Mathews), 10-206 (Pradeep)
Bowling: Taylor 8-3-26-2
	 Roach 6-1-15-0
	 Holder 5-1-9-0
	 Warrican 25-2-62-2
	 Brathwaite 11.3-4-29-6 

West Indies second innings 
Kraigg Brathwaite lbw b Prasad  			03
Shai Hope not out   					17
Extras    						00 
Total:   (1 wicket) 					20  

Fall of wicket:20 
Bowling: Prasad 5-2-4-1, Pradeep 1-0-8-0, Herath 3-1-8-0


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