Rain-hit Lankan-Windies Test ends in draw

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Published: Saturday, November 27, 2010, 18:14 [IST]
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Rain-hit SL-WI Test ends in dra

On the morning of the final day of the second test between Sri Lanka and the West Indies, both sides might have been hoping to salvage some excitement in the rain-affected match. But damp conditions intervened again and the first session of play was washed out without a single ball being bowled.

Then after lunch, the West Indies resumed batting from their Day 3 score of 165/5. Wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh and allrounder Dwayne Bravo started off in a positive enough manner. Bravo's batting took on an aggressive tone as the afternoon progressed when he slapped pace bowler Suranga Lakmal for two fours in the 57th over. In the very next over, Bravo hammered Herath for a four and then a six.

But his fun came to an end in the 59th over. Herath bowled a beautifully-flighted delivery which deceived Bravo who was caught behind for 20 and the Windies were 205/6. There was more good fortune for Sri Lanka in the next over when Windies captain Darren Sammy was snapped up by Angelo Mathews at square leg off Lakmal. He had to depart for 2 and now the Windies tail was exposed. Rangana Herath then made short work of Suleiman Benn who was out for a duck when he was caught at short leg. The tourists were in dire straights at 209/8 in the 62nd over.

Then Baugh and Shane Shillingford put on a last stand of 31 runs, which included a few fours, before Baugh was bowled by Herath for a well-made 50. Finally, it took Ajantha Mendis just three deliveries in the 70th over to get rid of last man Kemar Roach and the Windies had folded for the modest total of 243, handing their opponents a sizable lead of 144 runs.

In their second innings, the Sri Lankans were looking at adding a quick extension to their lead. So, they got off in slight belligerent fashion with the fours coming fairly frequently from the bats of Tillakaratne Dilshan and Tharaga Paranavitana. But Dilshan's bludgeoning innings came to an end in the 14th over when he was caught behind off Dwayne Bravo for 26. Then captain Kumara Sangakkara and Paranavitana added on a couple more run before Sri Lanka declared at 57/1, setting the Windies a target of 202.

The tourists got off to a poor start. Adrian Barath completed an ordinary Test match with the bat when he was out for 8, getting trapped in front by Mendis. The Windies were 9/1. Then Chris Gayle, who was not his usual aggressive self, was out for a mere 3 runs in the next over when Dilshan had him caught by Mahela Jayawardene at slip. The West Indies were in trouble at 12/2 and suddenly there was just a glimmer of hope that this match would produce a result. But it was not to be as Darren Bravo and Shivnarine Chanderpaul guided their side to another draw.

The past five days had been severely dulled by frequent rain interventions and bad light interludes. The West Indies had got off to such a positive start on Day 1, pegging back the Lankans to 32/3 and then gradually saw the initiative slip away from them as the Lankans posted a substantial first innings total of 387, before bowling out the tourists for just 243 on the fifth day. It seemed there was just enough time for the Windies to lose a couple of wickets before the inevitable draw was sealed.


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