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Published: Wednesday, August 1, 2001, 23:53 [IST]
Indians fighting with backs to the wall
India's tour of Sri Lanka
Colombo: The Indian openers once again acquitted themselves well till just about lunch. India had reached 112 for one with Murali striking very close to lunch.[an error occurred while processing this directive]Sri Lanka banked on star off spinner Muthiah Muralitharan to exploit a wearing pitch. And Murali obliged, thanks to a fine catch at silly point by Hasan Thilakaratne. Shiv Sundar Das (68) was snaffled by the excellent catch.It looked like the Indian openers would hold fort to lunch. But that was not to be and India was psychologically down. Rahul Dravid, however, did not hestitate to play a positive shot off the first ball of Murali. Can, the Indians now ride on this positive frame of mind and at least salvage a draw is indeed the moot point.The Indians are still behind the Sri Lankan first innings lead with five sessions of play remaining. They will have to show a lot of grit and determination. This might still look a tall order with India conceding a massive first innings lead of 376 runs.Sri Lankan captain Sanath Jayasuriya adopted a double spin attack with about 25 minutes to go for lunch. Jayasuriya bowled from one end, with star off spinner Muthiah Muralitharan attacking from the other. The wicket has held firm and it is now in the hands of the other Indian batsmen to salvage pride.