How Kumar Sangakkara bats in this innings could decide the fate of this match © Getty Images
How Kumar Sangakkara bats in this innings could decide the fate of this match © Getty Images

By Shiamak Unwalla

Jun 22, 2014

Sri Lanka head to Tea at a comfortable 99 for two. Openers Dimuth Karunaratne and Kaushal Silva were the men dismissed, but a very solid looking Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene were at the crease with the Lankans trailing by just nine runs.

James Anderson started things off after lunch, and caused Karunaratne some problems right away. Chris Jordan continued for what would prove to be a longish seven-over spell. Liam Plunkett started things off with a short, quick ball that passed inches from Kaushal Silva’s face. There was an LBW appeal against Silva which was turned down. The Englishmen went for a review, but it was going down the leg stump.

Plunkett continued to look very good, as Silva poked at one which Matt Prior accepted gleefully. Plunkett struck again soon before Tea, getting Karunaratne out caught behind. Mahela Jayawardene was the new batsman. Between the experienced Sri Lankan duo, they held off the English attack till the Tea break.

Chris Jordan and Stuart Broad were largely unpenetrative, while James Anderson didn’t bowl as much as he could have. Only Plunkett looked dangerous, and his two wickets were testimony to that. Sri Lanka will be hoping that their two stalwarts can kick on in the final session and swell the lead. England, on the other hand, will be hoping they can bundle out the visitors soon, and chase a manageable score.

Sri Lanka  257 (Kumar Sangakkara 79, Dinesh Chandimal 45; Liam Punkett 5 for 64, Stuart Broad 3 for 46) and 99 for 2 (Dimuth Karunaratne 45, Kumar Sangakkara 26 not out; Liam Plunkett 2 for 27) trail England 365 (Sam Robson 127, Gary Ballance 74; Shaminda Eranga 4 for 93, Angelo Mathews 4 for 44) by 9 runs.

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(Shiamak Unwalla is a reporter with Cricket Country. He is a self-confessed Sci-Fi geek and Cricket fanatic who likes to pass his free time by reading books, watching TV shows, and eating food. Sometimes all at the same time. You can follow him on twitter at @ShiamakUnwalla)