Home News England eye big lead against depleted Sri Lanka

England eye big lead against depleted Sri Lanka

England’s lethal bowling was followed by resilience Joe Root fifty at the end of the first day’s play of Gallr Test. Sri Lanka lead by eight runs but still have eight wickets to pick.

Sri Lanka were struck by the loss of regular captain Dimuth Karunaratne and Suranga Lakmal due to injuries. Dinesh Chandimal was named the stand-in captain on his Test return. 

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After early departure of openers Dom Sibley (4) and Zak Crawley (9), England bounced back.

English skipper Root is unbeaten on 115-ball 66 runs, his 50th Test half-century. He will be looking for an 18th ton on day two. Jonny Bairstow, who is playing his first Test match in one year, is on 47 runs off 91 balls. Coming into number three, he has hit two boundaries so far.

The Bairstow-Root stand piled on 110* runs for the third wicket, England’s highest-ever at Galle International Stadium.

Earlier, Sri Lanka were rattled for 135 runs in 46.1 overs, the lowest total batting first at the venue. The collapse started with Lahiru Thirimanne middling Stuart Broad straight to leg slip.

The innings was wrapped up within the second session, with Chandimal top-scoring at 28. Angelo Mathews scored 27 on his return to the side after injury. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka’s No.3 Kusal Mendis scored his fourth consecutive duck in Test cricket.

England operated with two spinners on a sluggish pitch. Off-spinner Dom Bess bagged his second five-for in Tests, 5/30 in 10.1 overs. Jack Leach bowled 17 overs for 1/55. Broad took 3 for 20 in nine overs.

Brief scores:

Sri Lanka 1st innings: 135 allout in 46.1 overs (Chandimal 28, Mathews 27; Bess 5/30, Broad 3/20)

England 1st innings: 127/2 in 41 overs (Root 66*, Bairstow 47*; Embuldeniya 2/55)

England trail by 8 runs

Stumps- Day 1  

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