Match drifting towards a thrilling finish

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By 2017-07-18

By Anjana Kaluarachchi

CT sports: The one off Test between Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe is nicely set-up for a thrilling final day with the hosts needing another 218 runs with seven wickets in hand for a win either way at R. Premadasa Stadium Colombo today.

Sri Lanka were 170 for three at stumps yesterday with Angelo Mathews (17) and Kusal Mendis (60) at the crease having put on an unbeaten partnership of 37 runs. Mendis who scored his fourth Test half century will enjoy the overnight break as he was cramping and physiotherapy attention was needed twice last afternoon.

Earlier, Sikandar Raza scored his maiden century as Zimbabwe lower order chipped in to score a massive second innings total of 377 setting up a target of 388 to get in the fourth inning with little over four sessions to play.

Sri Lanka was provided a positive start by Dimuth Karunaratne (49) and Upul Tharanga (27) as the pair added 58 runs for the first wicket before skipper Graeme Cremer came in to action. One drop batsman Kusal Mendis and Karunaratne added another 50 for the second wicket before Sean Williams found big turn off the surface. Karunaratne did not offer a stroke which was pitched way outside off stump, but then he could only watch in disbelief as it turned sharply to hit the top of his stumps and he departed for 49 runs. Skipper Dinesh Chandimal's innings was short lived as Cremer came in to action once again.

Resuming the inning on 252 for 6 Sikandar Raza needed just three runs off only two deliveries to get to his maiden century.

His overnight partner Waller could not add much to the tally as Dilruwan Perera removed him for 68 runs, but the pair had added 144 runs for the seventh wicket. Raza quickly followed Waller as he was bowled by Rangana Herath who completed his 31st five wicket haul. Raza scored 127 runs with nine fours and one six.

Even after the departure of Raza, the home team's worries weren't over as skipper Greame Cremer (48) and Donald Tiripano (19) added another 55 runs for the ninth wicket pushing Zimbabwe beyond 350 for the second time.

Rangana Herath finished with 6 for 133 while Suranga Lakmal went wicketless bowling just 14 overs. Kusal Mendis bowled four overs filling in for the injured Asela Gunaratne who was off the field.


Zimbabwe 1st innings 356 (C. Ervine 160; R. Herath 5-116)

Sri Lanka 1st innings 356 (U. Tharanga 71, D. Chandimal 55; G. Cremer 5-125)

Zimbabwe 2nd innings

H. Masakadza lbw b Herath 07
R. Chakabva b Herath 06
T. Musakanda c Karunaratne b Herath 00
C. Ervine c Karunaratne b Perera 05
S. Williams b Herath 22
S. Raza b Herath 127
P. Moor c sub (Gunathilaka) b Kumara 40
M. Waller c Tharanga b Perera 68
G. Cremer c Karunaratne b Herath 48
D. Tiripano lbw b Perera 19
C. Mpofu not out 09
Extras (b4, lb14, w7, nb1) 26
Total (all out; 107.1 overs) 377
Fall: 1-14, 2-16, 3-17, 4-23, 5-59, 6-145, 7-289, 8-306, 9-361, 10-377.
Bowling: Lakmal 14-0-43-0; Herath 39.1-5-133-6; Perera 30-2-95-3; L. Kumara 20-3-72-1 (nb1, w3); K. Mendis 4-0-16-0.


Sri Lanka 2nd innings

D. Karunaratne b Williams 49
U. Tharanga c Moor b Cremer 27
K. Mendis not out 60
D. Chandimal c Masakadza b Cremer 15
A. Mathews not out 17
Extras (lb2) 2
Total (3 wickets at close 48 overs) 170
Still to bat: A. Gunaratne, N. Dickwella, D. Perera, R. Herath, S. Lakmal, L. Kumara
Fall: 1-58, 2-108, 3-133
Bowling: Raza 9-1-29-0; Williams 16-0-62-1; Cremer 19-0-67-2; Waller 4-0-10-0



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