England on verge of series whitewash against Sri Lanka

England on verge of series whitewash against Sri Lanka
©Reuters
 
Jos Buttler 64 for England today
©Reuters
 

England have increased their grasp over Sri Lanka in this match, on the 3rd day, of the 3rd and final Test of the series. England had started the day on 3-0 in their 2nd Innings.

Match Summary

England 336 (Jonny Bairstow 110, Ben Stokes 57; Lakshan Sandakan 5-95) and 230 (Jos Buttler 64; Dilruwan Perera 5-88)

Sri Lanka – 240 (Dimuth Karunaratne 83, Dhananjaya de Silva 73; Adil Rashid 5-49, Ben Stokes 3-30) and 53-4 (Moeen Ali 2-11)

At the Close of Play – Sri Lanka need 274 runs to win

Scorecard

England were bowled out for 230 in their 2nd innings, giving them a lead of 326. Jos Buttler 64 and Ben Stokes 43 were the mainstays of the England innings and Dilruwan Perera 5-88 the pick of the Sri Lankan bowlers.

In reply, Sri Lanka were  53-4 at the close. Moeen Ali picking up two wickets for England.

England should wrap up a win tomorrow to complete a 3-0 whitewash over Sri Lanka on this tour.

Comment

A day that ended on a high for England did not start out too well for them as opener Rory Burns and Keaton Jennings were both rapped on the pads by Dilruwan Perera quite early.

The star of the first innings Jonny Bairstow could not repeat his heroics in the second essay. Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler then extended the lead by playing quick knocks with a few more contributions from Moeen Ali, Ben Foakes and Adil Rashid down the order.

England were successful in taking a healthy lead of around 330. If Lakshan Sandakan picked up a fifer in the first innings, Dilruwan Perera did just that in the second innings. He was assisted by three wickets from Malinda Pushpakumara and two from Sandakan.

A fine example of England's acute planning came when Angelo Mathews was out on the crease. Realising that Mathews is a compulsive hooker, Ben Stokes bowled an away going bouncer at pace and Mathews could not help but try to pull it. The result was that he was caught beautifully by Stuart Broad at mid wicket and Sri Lanka lost their most experienced batsman.

Moeen Ali dismissed both openers Dimuth Karunaratne and Danushka Gunathilaka relatively early. The last bit belonged to Ben Stokes, not for the wicket he took but for the intensity with which he bowled, with some deliveries clocking over 145 kmph.

It would just be just a formality on day four as England are all set to clean sweep the Test series 3-0 and write a new chapter in the history books of cricket.

Sri Lanka - Dimuth Karunaratne, Danushka Gunathilaka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Roshen Silva, Niroshan Dickwella(wk), Dilruwan Perera, Suranga Lakmal(c), Lakshan Sandakan, Malinda Pushpakumara

England - Rory Burns, Keaton Jennings, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root(c), Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Moeen Ali, Ben Foakes(wk), Adil Rashid, Stuart Broad, Jack Leach

 

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