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Dambulla: Jul 26, 2013
Indian bowlers put up an impressive performance to take the visitors within sniffing distance of a win before the last-wicket pair of Ramesh Mendis and Lakshan Jayasinghe stood tall to eke out a creditable draw for Sri Lanka in the first Youth Test (Under-19) at Dambulla.
Till Thursday evening, the match was heading for a tame draw with Sri Lanka comfotably placed at 235 for five in their first innings in reply to India’s 503 for seven declared.
Resuming their innings, Sri Lanka needed another 119 runs to reach 354 and avoid the follow-on.
But Indian pace duo of Atul Singh (three for 39) and Chama Milind (two for 41) had other plans as the Lankans lost their last five wickets for just 21 runs to enforce the follow-on on the home team.
Indian bowlers needed to pick up 10 more wickets on a placid track to win the match and they came tentalisingly close to their target before Mendis (22 not out) and Jayasinghe (8 not out) spoiled the visitors’ party.
Singh (two for 38), Milind (two for 46), Kuldeep Yadav (two for 100) and Shreyas Iyer (two for 22) shared eight wickets between them to bring India within sniffing distance of a win, which was not to be.
With Sri Lanka down at 241 for nine, still needing six more runs to avoid an innings defeat, the last-wicket pair of Mendis and Jayasinghe bat out 55 balls to save the match, much to the frustration of the Indians.
Mendis played 77 balls during his gritty unbeaten knock.
He got able support from last man Jayasinghe from the other end who managed to keep at bay 29 deliveries.
Sadeera Samarawickrama (88) top-scored for the Lankans in their second innings score of 264 for nine. Thilaksha Sumanasiri (62) also scored a half-century for the hosts.
The second and final Test of the series will be played in Welagedara Stadium, Kurunegala from July 29 to August 1.
India Under-19 1st innings: 503 for seven decl (Vijay Zol 173, Sanju Samson 89; Chamika Karunaratne 4 for 94) drew with Sri Lanka Under-19 256 (Kavindu Kulasekara 76, Minod Bhanuka 56; Kuldeep Yadav 4 for 95) and 264 for nine (Sadeera Samarawickrama 88, Thilaksha Sumanasiri 62; Shreyas Iyer 2 for 22).
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