Triple tons put Lanka in firm control at SSC

Published: Thursday, July 24, 2008, 19:18 [IST]
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Warnapura (115) and Jayawardene (136) scamper for a single en route to their 155-run stand for the third wicket on day two of Ist Test at SSCColombo: Malinda Warnapura (115), Mahela Jayawardene (136) and Thilan Samaraweera (111*) made merry on a flat batting wicket with centuries as Lanka raised a massive 422/4 on day two of the first Test against India at the SSC here on Thursday.

The trio exploited a perfect batting wicket at the SSC to the hilt. Warnapura dominated the scoring in first session while Jayawardene had his say in second. And the post tea session belonged to Samarweera. The under-rated Lankan middle-order batsman remained unconquered on 111 at close.


Samaraweera, in his fifth Test game, notched up his second career hundred. He hit 14 boundaries in his 202-ball knock. Mahela scored a flowing 136 in his happy hunting ground. The Lankan skipper stroked 10 boundary hits and one six en route to his 22nd Test hundred. The duo played out the first session and added 155 runs in the process.

The right-handed Samaraweera joined the run feast at the fag end of the day by scoring his seventh Test ton on what turned out to be a nightmarish day for the visitors.

However it was the fluent Jayawardene, who stole the limelight by scoring his ninth century at the SSC, thus becoming only the second player after Sir Don Bradman to hit nine centuries at a particular venue. The Australian legend had hit nine centuries at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Tillakaratne Dilshan (20) was giving Samaraweera company at the crease at stumps with the hosts inching towards a mammoth first innings total.

The butter-fingered Indians allowed the match slip out of their hands by spilling as many as four offerings from Mahela and Warnapura. Karthik was the culprit on two occasion while Gambhir dropped one at forward short-leg.

Indian bowlers pacers and spinners alike toiled on a unforgiving wicket. Ishant, who plucked the wicket of Jayawardene caught behind, was the only India bowler who looked penetrative. Offie Harbhajan looked threatening at spells took the other wicket to fall today when he induced Warnapura to edge straight to Dravid at slips.

Umpire Referrals: India at receiving end

Umpire referral rule was applied for the first time in Test cricket. Third umpire was called for review of on-field umpires' decision on two occassions. India was at the receiving end on both the occassion. Warnapura and Dilshan Tilakaratne were the beneficiaries.


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