England celebrate after taking the first wicket against Sri Lanka © Getty Images
By Bharath Ramaraj
Jun 13, 2014
After England amassed 575 for nine declared on the board against Sri Lanka, the visitors ended up with 140 for the loss of one wicket during the second day’s play of the first Test at Lord’s. With a quick outfield and a good deck for batting, Sri Lankan batsmen played some delightful strokes. Kaushal Silva, the right-hander looked in fine touch and made a fifty. Kumar Sangakkara, the veteran batsman also played well.
England’s bowlers, especially James Anderson and Stuart Broad bowled well, but without much luck going their way. It was Chris Jordan, the debutant, who finally took the first wicket to fall and that was of Dimuth Karunaratne. Liam Plunkett bowled with good pace, but didn’t always bowl with control.
Earlier, Joe Root, who held the innings together went onto get a double-hundred. The first time he has made a double century in his short Test career. He also became the fourth youngest to score a double century. During the second session, he was well supported by the comeback man, Plunkett. The seam/swing bowler can also bat a bit. He used the long handle to good effect and made 38, before getting out to Nuwan Pradeep.
However, the second day’s play was all about how well Root played. He kept the scorecard ticking and when needed, he also played shots. It has to be said that Sri Lanka’s sloppy fielding didn’t help their cause. Once England declared, both James Anderson and Stuart Broad bowled well. Anderson even got a lbw decision against Dimuth Karunaratne in his favour. But it was overturned, as the batsman went for the review. England now will look to take early wickets and put Sri Lankan setup under pressure.
Actually, England started on a sedate note with both Matt Prior and Root looking to play themselves in. Sri Lankan seamers looked to dig in a few short balls. It troubled both Root and Prior. Root got a top edge off Pradeep‘s bowling and Kaushal Silva deputising for Prasanna Jayawardene for a brief period couldn’t take what can go down only as a technical chance.
Eranga and Pradeep continued to bowl short pitch stuff. Eranga went around the wicket and did extract something from a good batting track. He eventually was rewarded with Prior fending off a short delivery to the short-leg fielder, Silva. He also got Chris Jordan’s wicket. The No 8 batsman too was bounced out by the seamer. He was caught by Jayawardene, the wicketkeeper. Stuart Broad then, flayed Sri Lanka’s pace attack all over the park. He was finally out for 47. Root on the other hand, played his own game and now has 150 to his name.
England 575 for 9 decl. (Joe Root 200*, Matt Prior 86; Nuwan Pradeep 4 for 123) lead Sri Lanka 140 for 1 (Dimuth Karunaratne 38, Kaushal Silva 62*; Chris Jordan 1 for 26) by 435 runs.
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(Bharath Ramaraj, an MBA in marketing, eats, drinks and sleeps cricket. He has played at school and college-level, and now channelises his passion for the game by writing about it)