Sri Lanka inch closer to series victory on an action packed day two

Sri Lanka inch closer to series victory on an action packed day two
Rangana Herath became the second Sri Lankan bowler to claim a Test hat-trick.
©REUTERS / Action Images

Sri Lanka 281 & 237 (Dilruwan 64) v
Australia 106 & 25-3 (Warner 22no)
Second Test, day two, Galle

On a day where 21 wickets fell in Galle, Sri Lanka posted a target of 413 runs and took three Australian wickets in the fourth innings, leaving the visitors at a distant 388 runs away from a victory at the end of day two of the second Test.

Earlier in the day, four-wicket hauls from Dilruwan Perera and Rangana Herath, who also picked a hat-trick in the process decimated Australia and bowled them out for 106 runs before a six-wicket haul from Mitchell Starc bowled Sri Lanka out in the second innings for 237 runs in 59.3 overs.

Australia resumed their first innings on the overnight score of 54 for two. Minutes into the session, Dinesh Chandimal missed a Steven Smith (5) stumping.

However, Sri Lanka removed both Smith and Usman Khawaja (11) in successive overs, leaving Australia at 59 for four.

Mitchell Marsh (27) and Adam Voges (8) stayed in the middle for a while but Herath’s (4-35) hat-trick in the 25th over, completed floored Australia.

Voges was caught in the covers while Peter Nevill (0) and Starc (0) were out LBW. Sri Lanka needed a review to dismiss Starc. Sri Lanka took nine more overs to bowl Australia out for 106 runs in 33.2 overs.

After a horrid start to the second day, Australia made a few amends by removing Kaushal Silva (2) and Dimuth Karunaratne (7) inside the first three overs.

Kusal Mendis (7) was dropped in the fifth over but did not last long, as he was caught behind in the seventh. Off the last ball of the session, Angelo Mathews (47) survived an LBW review. 11 wickets fell in the first session, by the end of which Sri Lanka were 31 for three in their second innings.

Post-lunch, Mathews and Kusal Perera (35) put on a brief partnership before the latter was castled by Nathan Lyon (2-80) in the 16th over.

Chandimal’s (13) 37-minute stay at the crease was ended in the 24th over but Mathews was strong at the other end.

Four overs prior to the tea break, Australia also accounted for Mathews, leaving Sri Lanka down at 143 for six at the end of the second session, but the overall lead had gone past 300 runs.

In the fourth over of the final session, Dhananjaya de Silva (34) was caught behind off Starc (6-50) after a brief cameo.

Dilruwan (64) played an aggressive knock and also survived an LBW review in the 46th over. Along with Herath (26), Dilruwan added 61 runs for the eighth wicket and took the lead past 400.

The stand was broken with the fall of Herath in the 59th over, but not after Dilruwan completed his fifty.

After a brief rain interruption, Starc removed both Dilruwan and Vishwa Fernando (0) in successive overs to complete a six-wicket haul. Sri Lanka were bowled out for 237 runs but they had set a target of 413 runs for Australia.

Australia were once again rattled quite early as Joe Burns (2), Lyon (0) and Usman Khawaja (0) fell in the first four overs.

However, David Warner (22 not out) and Smith (1 not out) negotiated two more overs safely to take Australia to 25 for three at stumps. Australia still need 388 runs to win.

© Cricket World 2016