Samaraweera Sparkles Before New Zealand Falter
Sri Lanka 416 (Samaraweera 143, M Jayawardene 92) v
New Zealand 159-5 (Taylor 70no)
Second Test, Colombo, day two
Thilan Samaraweera's golden run of form shows no sign of abating and his innings of 143 helped Sri Lanka maintain control of the second and final Test against New Zealand in Colombo.
His efforts, which included a 180-run partnership with Mahela Jayawardene (92) helped Sri Lanka reach 416 before reducing New Zealand to 159 for fiveat stumps on day two.
Sri Lanka lead the series 1-0 after a crushing 202-run win in Galle and New Zealand showed signs of being up for the fight when Jeetan Patel picked up four wickets, dismissing Samaraweera, Chamara Kapugedera (35), Dammika Prasad (6) and Rangana Herath (0) as Sri Lanka's lower order was shot out in relatively quick order.
Daniel Vettori picked up the one wicket he needed to claim the 300th Test wicket for his country when he had Thilan Thushara caught by Patel for a duck but New Zealand followed that up with a less-than-inspiring batting display.
Thushara made up for his failure to score a run by grabbing the quick wickets of Martin Guptill (35) and Daniel Flynn (13) to finish the day with two for 37 but an 85-run stand between Ross Taylor and Jesse Ryder, who hit 23, gave New Zealand a boost.
Ryder was caught by Tharanga Paranavitana at short leg off of Herath before nightwatchman Patel (0) was caught by Jayawardene at slip to give Muttiah Muralitharan his 778th Test wicket.
Brendon McCullum was unbeaten at stumps on five, alongside Taylor, whose 70 in 118 balls has so far included nine boundaries.
© Cricket World 2009