Wickets tumble at Kandy

A total of 15 wickets fell on the first day of the second and final Test match between the West Indies and Sri Lanka at Kandy, as the match set on level terms at stumps. Having shot out the hosts impressively for just 150, the West Indies struggled to 92/5 at the close, with Chaminda Vaas participating in all 5 wickets to fall.

The West Indies won the toss and elected to bowl first on a pitch that was offering a little assistance to the quicker bowlers. Intent on proving that the team spirit of the first Test is still alive, the tourists mixed solid bowling and brilliant catching to initially reduce the Sri Lankans to 42/4.

Jayasuriya (2) was out prodding lamely outside the offstump, was adjuged caught behind off the bowling of Powell, and Sangakkara (6) followed up soon after with a terrible waft at the same bowler to be brilliantly caught in the slips by Morton.

Continuing in beautiful rhythm, Powell got a deliver to jump at Atapattu (17), and he was dropped by Narsingh Deonarine at short leg. The chance had the makings of a crucial one, as the Sri Lankan skipper banged the next delivery through the covers for four. However, with the introduction of Tino Best came a sigh of relief from Deonarine. The Bajan pacer bowled Atapattu between bat and pad with his first delivery of the match.

In his next over, Best struck again, with Jayawardene mimicking the loose strokeplay of Sangakkara and caught at slip for 6. The score then 42/4, Dilshan entered play and decided upon counterattack as the means to rebuild. He smashed Best for three consecutive fours, as the quick bowler let his emotions run wild and lost his control.

Best left the field for no explained reason after conceding 16 runs in an over, but returned to make an immediate impact heading into lunch. Charging to field a delivery off his own bowling, a throw to the bowler’s end resulted in Dilshan’s spectacular run out for 36 off 48 balls.

Sri Lanka went to lunch at 98/5 and could do little more upon their return, as the last 5 wickets fell for 43 runs. Indeed, Muttiah Muralitharan’s ubeaten quickfire 18 off 14 balls assisted the effort greatly.

Daren Powell finished with by far his best bowling effort in Test cricket, figures of 5 for 25 – the first time he has taken more than 3 wickets in an innings. Supporting nicely was Tino Best (3/50), but Jermaine Lawson was left wicketless, appearing out of sorts in the midst of chucking allegations.

For the second consecutive match, the West Indies had managed to dismiss the Sri Lankans in less than a day, allowing a period of 41 overs to be played to the close. Vaas revelled in the period of play, assisting in the run out of debutant Ryan Ramdass (3), then luring Marshall (4) to loft the ball to Atapattu at midoff – 9/2.

Not content, Vaas disrupted Morton’s stumps, bowled for 1, then snared the big wicket of Chanderpaul for 13. The score then 27/4, Deonarine joined Sylvester Joseph and the two rebuilt to 75, at the dismissal of the latter. The return of Vaas ushered the breakthrough just 4 balls into a new spell, and Joseph (18) was well-caught by Dilshan at second slip.

Once again thrust into the deep end, young Denesh Ramdin joined Deonarine, and the two played to the close – 92/5. Ubeaten on 36 and 8 respectively, Deonarine and Ramdin will resume tomorrow.

Vaas has taken 4 for 17 in his 13 overs to date.

Score Summary:

Sri Lanka 1st innings 150 all out (46.1 overs)
TT Samaraweera 37, TM Dilshan 36
DB Powell 5/25, TL Best 3/50

West Indies 1st innings 92/5 (41 overs)
NO Deonarine 36 not out, SC Joseph 18
WPUJC Vaas 4/17

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