Sri Lanka holds out as New Zealand chases win in 2nd test

New Zealand enforced the follow-on on the third day Sunday, leading by 461 after dismissing Sri Lanka for 164 in reply to its own 580-4 declared.

Published: 20th March 2023 11:41 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th March 2023 11:41 AM   |  A+A-

New Zealand's Neil Wagner (2L) hugs Kane Williamson. (Photo | AFP)

New Zealand's Neil Wagner (2L) hugs Kane Williamson. (Photo | AFP)


WELLINGTON: New Zealand claimed the vital wicket of Sri Lanka veteran Dinesh Chandimal minutes before lunch on the fourth day of the second cricket test Monday as it pushed hard to wrap up an innings victory.

Chandimal and Dhananjaya de Silva had stalled New Zealand's drive for an early win and 2-0 series victory by batting through most of the morning session in a 126-run partnership for Sri Lanka's fifth wicket.

But Chandimal offered his first rash shot with three minutes on the scoreboard clock until lunch.

He tried to pull a short ball from Blair Tickner and skied a catch to Doug Bracewell, running around from backward square. At lunch Sri Lanka was 249-5 and still trailed New Zealand by 167 runs.

Dhananjaya was 63 not out and had been joined by Nishan Mandushka who got off the mark with a six off Michael Bracewell.

New Zealand enforced the follow-on on the third day Sunday, leading by 461 after dismissing Sri Lanka for 164 in reply to its own 580-4 declared.

Sri Lanka started the fourth day on 113-2, still 303 runs behind, and was in deep trouble when New Zealand claimed two wickets within the first five overs of the morning session.

New Zealand seemed bent on finishing the game on the fourth day for its third consecutive test success after its famous 1-run victory over England at the Basin Reserve last month and it's two-wicket win in the first test of the current series.

It may also be racing against rain, which is forecast to fall in Wellington on the final day Tuesday.

Dhananjaya reached his 11th test half century from 80 balls and Chanidmal followed him to his 25th fifty off 74 balls as Sri Lanka had New Zealand a little nervous and desperate for another wicket.

Both batsmen looked reasonably comfortable through the morning session on a Basin Reserve pitch still providing good pace and bounce, and even some turn.

New Zealand often used spin at one end from Michael Bracewell and seam at the other, through his cousin Doug Bracewell or Blair Tickner, after Matt Henry claimed the first wicket of the day in the first over.

Tickner took on the role usually played by the injured Neil Wagner by attacking the batsmen with regular short-pitched bowling.

He also had to run into a fairly strong wind. Henry made the day's first breakthrough with the final ball of the first over.

Kusal Mendis who was 50 not out overnight, was still at that score when he pulled a ball from Henry to Kane Williamson at short midwicket.

Four overs later, Ticker drew Angelo Mathews into a pull shot and he skied the ball to Doug Bracewell on the square leg boundary.

India Matters


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