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Wed Apr 23 21:32:59 SAST 2014

Late wickets provide excitement on slow day

TEAMtalk Media | 03 July, 2012 15:430 Comments
Sri Lanka v England: 2nd Test - Day Four
Kumar Sangakkara
Image by: Tom Shaw / Getty Images

A flurry of wickets in the evening session saw Pakistan regain some momentum on day four of the second Test against Sri Lanka, while Kumar Sangakkara finished the day where he started, at the crease, on 144 not out.

Sangakkara and Tillakaratne Dilshan both recorded centuries for Sri Lanka as they recorded 278 for five at stumps. The duo batted together for most of the day, a partnership of 225, before Dilshan was sent packing after tea on 121, having recorded his 5000th Test run.

Sri Lanka were still 273 runs behind Pakistan's first innings total of 551, and four wickets as the sun started to set would have given them pause as they had not yet reached the follow-on target.

Junaid Khan dismissed Dilshan, and then Mahela Jayawardene for a duck, though the skipper was reluctant to leave the field as the ball struck him on the thigh pad, though he offered no shot and the umpire may have been looking at the line.

Sri Lanka started the day on 70 for one, with Dilshan and Sangakkara coming out to bat after an hour's delay in the start of play due to a wet outfield. The pair had no problems in the morning session, knocking the singles and occasional boundaries to keep the scoreboard ticking.

They went into lunch on 135 for one, both having scored their fifties with ease, and they were forced to wait around for another hour as the heavens opened while they ate.

The afternoon session saw only 43 runs scored as it was much reduced, and again both men were relaxed and there was nothing to write home about. In fact, the most interesting part of the afternoon was a five-year-old in full Sri Lanka gear (Sangakkara shirt included) batting with perfect Kallis-esque technique on the grass.

After tea, the pitch began to show some turn and bounce, and batting became slightly trickier. This didn't stop Dilshan from whacking a boundary to record his second century in two games though, as the runs increased.

Sangakkara followed to three figures soon after, becoming the 10th highest Test century scorer of all time, on 30 tons. At one stage, when Suraj Randiv came to the middle as night watchman, the scorecard read two centuries and three ducks.

Randiv couldn't complete the job though, and was bowled LBW by Abdur Rehman to bring the very long day to a close.

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Late wickets provide excitement on slow day

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