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2nd Test: Sri Lanka bats aggressively for 264 for 7 wickets at close of Day-1

Posted on 18 December 2015 by admin

Sri Lanka 264 for 7 (Mathews 63*, Siriwardene 62) v New Zealand.

Dinesh Chandimal

Angelo Mathews

New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum won the toss and pu the visiting Sri Lankans to bat on a supposedly green pitch at Seddon Park, Hamilton. Openers Dimuth Karunaratne and Kusal Mendis weathered the first 10 fiery over by Tim Southee and Trent Boult  when the former stuck in the 13th over when he had Karunaratne caught behind by Watling for 12 and the score at 39. Mendis, 31, and Udara Jayasundera, 26, consolidated the batting. Mendis left for a well compiled innings caught by Watling off Southee. Then came a welcome 71-run partnership between Jayasundera and No.4 batsman Dinesh Chandimal who is slipping into this position excellently like his predecessors Aravinda de Silva and Mahela Jayawardena. Jayasundera was unfortunately run out after 26 runs and this brought Chandimal with skipper Angelo Mathews. Six runs into the partnership Chandimal was unfortunately caught behind by Watling off the bowling of Doug Bracewell for a hard hit 47 runs. Then came the best partnership of the day, 138-runs between Mathews and Milinda Siriwardena that turned out like a 50-over game with each batsman hitting three sixes each during a hectic partnership that ended with Siriwardena caught by Ross Taylor for a well compile 62. Two quick wickets fell in the next few overs that saw Kithuruwan Vithanage and Rangana Herath made quick stops at the wicket. Then the rains came with Mathews at 63 not out. It was a good day for Sri Lanka despite the score.

stumps – Day 1 SRI Lanka
  Sri Lanka 1st innings R B 4s 6s SR
View dismissal FDM Karunaratne c †Watling b Southee 12 45 1 0 26.66
View dismissal BKG Mendis c †Watling b Southee 31 42 4 0 73.80
View dismissal MDUS Jayasundera run out (Santner/†Watling) 26 54 2 0 48.14
View dismissal LD Chandimal c †Watling b Bracewell 47 56 7 0 83.92
  AD Mathews* not out 63 111 5 3 56.75
View dismissal TAM Siriwardana c Taylor b Boult 62 81 5 3 76.54
View dismissal KDK Vithanage c McCullum b Boult 0 3 0 0 0.00
View dismissal HMRKB Herath run out (Williamson) 4 6 0 0 66.66
  PVD Chameera not out 0 4 0 0 0.00
  Extras (lb 7, w 12) 19        
  Total (7 wickets; 67 overs) 264 (3.94 runs per over)

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NZ rallies to take 118-run lead vs Sri Lanka in 2nd test

Posted on 05 January 2015 by admin

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Kane Williamson made 80 and B.J. Watling 48 in an unbroken 94-run partnership that rallied New Zealand to a 118-run lead over Sri Lanka on the third day of the second test on Monday. New Zealand was 253-5 at stumps, after trailing Sri Lanka by 135 runs on the first innings.

Nuwan Pradeep captured 3-57 to bowl the tourists into a winning position, but then dropped Williamson when he was on 60, giving New Zealand a break that could save its match.

Pradeep dismissed openers Hamish Rutherford (40) and Tom Latham (35) before lunch, then returned in the afternoon to remove Jimmy Neesham (19) when New Zealand was leading by only 24 runs and facing the prospect of a loss that would level the two-test series.

Dhammika Prasad also claimed the vital scalp of New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum, who led the hosts to victory in the first test in Christchurch with a sparkling first-innings total of 195 and had the potential to bat New Zealand back into a position of strength in the second test.

But McCullum was dismissed lbw to Prasad in the 47th over, leaving Williamson as New Zealand’s last hope of achieving a substantial lead.

Williamson and Watling stayed together for the remaining 41 overs before stumps, negotiating the arrival of the second new ball to guide New Zealand toward a defensible total with two days of the match remaining.

New Zealand was 205-5, leading by 70, when Williamson pulled a ball from Prasana to Pradeep at backward square-leg and the fieldsman juggled the ball twice before dropping the catch.

A wicket at that point would have exposed New Zealand’s lower order, if not its tail, shortly before the second new ball, tipping the match in Sri Lanka’s favor.

But Williamson survived and continued to occupy the crease until stumps, supported by Watling, who is trying to bat himself out of a lean patch. He made 26 in the first test at Christchurch and 11 in the first innings of the current test.

New Zealand’s scoring rate was pedestrian: Williamson and Watling added their 94 runs in just 40.3 overs. But Sri Lanka’s bowling performance also lost focus as the day went on.

At the start, they showed the ability to carefully execute well-set plans to run through the New Zealand top order. Rutherford and Latham had put on 75 for the first wicket when Sri Lanka began to turn the match in its favor by claiming three wickets for 4 runs in the space of 29 balls.

Pradeep began bowling around the wicket to Rutherford, testing him with a series of short-pitched balls. Mathews then moved a fielder to third man but stationed him well in from the boundary and when Rutherford finally took a big swing at a shorter ball, his shot flew directly to the fielder who hardly moved to take the catch.

Latham had played a series of sweet cover drives in the first hour as New Zealand briefly seemed to be getting on top of the Sri Lanka attack.
But he also fell to a well-executed plan: Pradeep, bowling over the wicket and across the left-hander, tempted him to drive again and he feathered an edge to Jayawardene, the ninth dismissal by a wicketkeeper in the match so far.

New Zealand 221 & 253/5 (101.0 ov)

Sri Lanka 356

New Zealand lead by 118 runs with 5 wickets remaining

New Zealand 221 & 253/5 (101.0 ov)

Sri Lanka 356

New Zealand lead by 118 runs with 5 wickets remaining

Sri Lanka in New Zealand Test Series – 2nd Test

Test no. 2155 | 2014/15 season

Played at Basin Reserve, Wellington

3,4,5,6,7 January 2015 (5-day match)

Stumps – Day 3

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2nd Test SL V. NZ: Bowlers on top as 15 wickets fall on day-1

Posted on 03 January 2015 by admin

Sri Lanka 78 for 5 (Sangakkara 33*, Bracewell 3-23) trail New Zealand 221 (Williamson 69, Pradeep 4-63, Lakmal 3-71) by 143 runs.

Trent Boult made the first strike, forcing an outside edge from Dimuth Karunaratne in his fifth over, before Doug Bracewell, chosen over Neil Wagner specifically for this pitch, struck in consecutive overs to leave Sri Lanka wobbling at 29 for 3. Mathews resisted for a while before being squared up by an outswinger from Tim Southee, while Prasanna Jayawardene edged Bracewell to second slip off the last delivery of the day. The hopes of any rearguard action rested solely on Kumar Sangakkara, who crossed the personal landmark of 12,000 Test runs, and showed signs of comfort towards the end as his trademark cover drive made appearance.

The Basin Reserve strip had promised more for the bowlers than the green Hagley Oval pitch last week on which McCullum had trampled on Sri Lanka’s hopes. Similar fate seemed in store for the visitors as Kane Wiliamson and Ross Taylor added 79 runs in 95 balls to lift New Zealand to 141 for 2, the toss win appearing a lost opportunity. That was till one Pradeep delivery moved off the pitch and caught the inside edge of Taylor’s bat to rattle the stumps.

Five-day tests. Remember them? The first test in Christchurch was done well inside four days, and if you were in possession of fifth-day tickets for the second test at the Basin Reserve, you’d be tempted to try for a quick sale.

There would be few takers.

New Zealand were rolled for 221 yesterday, having been sent in. It was some way short of satisfactory but, by the end of a day in which 15 wickets fell, is looking more like 421 with Sri Lanka on the ropes at 78 for five.

As in Christchurch, Sri Lanka’s seamers missed a trick in the first session, but made up for it over the following two-and-a-half hours.

New Zealand’s seamers, including the recalled, and resurgent Doug Bracewell, showed the visitors how to make use of favourable conditions. Bracewell took three for 23 from his 7.4 overs to fully justify his recall in place of Neil Wagner.

He said he was told yesterday before the start.
“I was just told to do what I’ve been doing and that’s what I do,” said Bracewell, who has been in good form in domestic cricket. “I just stick to what I’m good at and keep it pretty simple and things seem to be going pretty well at the moment.”

It didn’t go quite so well for New Zealand’s three best batsmen, who all played balls on to their stumps yesterday.

One theory was they were undone in part by a slight tendency for the ball to hold up on the grassy pitch. Alternatively, they were simply poorly-executed shots from a technical standpoint.

Brendon McCullum was presented with the keys to Wellington by mayor Celia Wade-Brown at lunch. Fat lot of good that did him, on his first trip back to the scene of his record-breaking triple century last summer.

He tried to cut a ball too close to him, his second ball, and it cannoned into his stumps. There was a time, not so long ago, when that would have been the cue for another outpouring from the grumblers over his too-adventurous batting approach.

McCullum was part of a poor collective mid-afternoon display, as New Zealand lost their last eight wickets for just 80 in 22.3 overs.

Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor had put on 79 for the third wicket, mostly looking in control, but with enough runs coming from the edge to suggest the Sri Lankan bowlers were cottoning onto the right length.

Taylor’s dismissal, when he chopped on a ball from Sri Lanka’s best seamer, Nuwan Pradeep, started the slide.

New Zealand like playing the game at a reasonable pace, and it was reflected in some of their shot-making.

Sri Lanka, despite ragged fielding, had every right to feel they’d got themselves back into a test they must win to square the series. That turned to custard, however, in the final 90 minutes.

Trent Boult had the ball on a string, and Southee and Bracewell were good. Sri Lanka’s batting wasn’t, although Bracewell would concede his first wicket – when Kaushal Silva jammed down on a delivery which bounced up and landed on top of his stumps – was fortunate.

Kumar Sangakkara was 33 not out at stumps, although he wasn’t entirely in charge. Twice he flirted with his leg stump off inside edges to Bracewell and on 17 would have been run out, after slipping then setting off, had the throw been accurate or a fielder been stationed at the bowler’s end.

On five, he reached 12,000 test runs. Only India’s Sachin Tendulkar (15,921 runs), Australian Ricky Ponting (13,378), South African Jacques Kallis (13,289) and India’s Rahul Dravid (13,288) have scored more than the classy lefthander.

There’s no question Sri Lanka’s hopes of getting close to New Zealand today rest on his shoulders.

– Herald on Sunday

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New Zealand v Sri Lanka, 2nd Test, Wellington starting Jan. 3rd

Posted on 02 January 2015 by admin

January 3-7, 2015.

The second innings of the Boxing Day Test is what both sides have kept in mind in the approach to the second Test. For Sri Lanka, the fightback is a source of self belief. “We can compete out here,” is the thought they have embraced. For the hosts, memories of that second innings have prevented them from “getting too far ahead of ourselves.” The Christchurch match was won on the back of stunning first-innings performances, but New Zealand are taking nothing for granted in Wellington.

Having now had more time to acclimatise, Sri Lanka are expected to be a sterner opposition, but New Zealand still hold the aces. In a nine-month period in which Sri Lanka have already faced the England and South Africa attacks, Kaushal Silva said he has not ever seen swing as late and accurate as what Trent Boult and Tim Southee delivered. Many also thought Brendon McCullum would not top his 202 in Sharjah for a long time, but he did so on his very next outing, on a seaming deck. Add Kane Williamson’s form, and the general confidence surging through this side to the equation, and New Zealand appear among the most potent Test forces in the world at present.

Sri Lanka’s path to parity is marked out by grit, and that is a quality they have possessed plenty of in the past year. They are outgunned man-for-man in these conditions, but feel they can hold their own as a team. Aggressive batsmen have been prepared to go slow. The lower order has made some runs. Angelo Mathews has held the whole operation together, making vital stands with the tail, and providing sparse but important breakthroughs with the ball. For this match they also have Rangana Herath, who has a track record of running through New Zealand, albeit on much more helpful surfaces.

Form guide

New Zealand WWDLW (last five matches, most recent first)
Sri Lanka LWWDL

In the spotlight

Hamish Rutherford’s Test career so far has been an endeavour to make good on the promise of his 171 from 217 balls on debut against England in 2013, but in 25 completed innings since, he has crossed fifty only once. Known in domestic cricket for his positive approach – which should make him a good fit for this New Zealand side – Rutherford must make runs in Wellington or risk being cut loose again, as he was after the tour of the Caribbean last year.

There is perhaps no harder worker in international cricket than Kumar Sangakkara, and visibly distraught at his match-aggregate of seven in Christchurch, he has virtually lived in the nets since. Perhaps he knows that this attack has laid him low before. In the last Test series against New Zealand, Sangakkara made only 21 runs in three innings – and that was in Sri Lanka. He has a sublime record against every team, and in every continent, and he will be desperate to prove himself once again, on what will probably be his final overseas Test.

Teams news

Tim Southee has suffered a minor ankle injury between Tests, and a decision about his availability has not yet been made. McCullum said Doug Bracewell would take Southee’s place, should he prove unfit. Corey Anderson has regained fitness, but with James Neesham having made runs in Christchurch, the hosts have suggested they will stick by him. Kane Williamson is also carrying a shoulder niggle, after landing awkwardly on it, but McCullum expected him to play.

New Zealand: (probable) 1 Tom Latham, , 2 Hamish Rutherford, 3 Kane Williamson, 4 Ross Taylor, 5 Brendon McCullum (capt), 6 James Neesham, 7 BJ Watling (wk), 8 Mark Craig, 9 Neil Wagner, 10 Tim Southee/Doug Bracewell, 11 Trent Boult

Sri Lanka might have been tempted to play two spinners at the Basin, but the inch of grass seen on the pitch would probably have scuppered those thoughts. Herath, who was likely to be a straight swap for Tharindu Kaushal, is only 50-50 to play. “Herath must pass a fitness Test on Saturday morning before he is cleared to play,” Mathews said. Dinesh Chandimal may also come in for Niroshan Dickwella, and Dhammika Prasad’s place may be under threat from Nuwan Pradeep.

Sri Lanka: (probable) 1 Dimuth Karunaratne, 2 Kaushal Silva, 3 Kumar Sangakkara, 4 Lahiru Thirimanne, 5 Angelo Mathews (capt), 6 Dinesh Chandimal, 7 Prasanna Jayawardene (wk), 8 Rangana Herath/Tharindu Kaushal, 9 Dhammika Prasad/Nuwan Pradeep, 10 Shaminda Eranga, 11 Suranga Lakmal

Pitch and conditions


This pitch looks even greener than the surface at Hagley Oval did in the approach to that Test, but locals say that does not necessarily mean it will be a seamers’ paradise throughout. The surface will be spicy on the first day, but then has a tendency to flatten out somewhat, though it is expected to retain the pace and bounce that will keep bowlers in the contest. The weather forecast is good for the first few days, but worsens towards the end of the Test. The wind, of course, always has a bearing on the match in Wellington.

Stats and trivia

• New Zealand have gone unbeaten in 10 matches at home. The last side to defeat them was South Africa, in March 2012

• Rangana Herath has 31 New Zealand wickets at an average of 19.58 – his best against any opposition. His three wickets in New Zealand, though, came at 40 runs apiece, in a Napier Test back in 2005

• Brendon McCullum’s 1164 runs in 2014 came at a strike rate of over 72. This despite his rearguard 302 against India in Wellington having come off 559 balls

Quotes

“Tim is incredibly honest with his assessment and most of the time he will play even if he’s not quite right. I think in this circumstance he’ll make a pretty astute judgement on whether he thinks he’s right or not and we’ve got trust in our support staff as well as in our physio and coach to make the right decision. We’ll see how it scrubs up in the morning, and if he is a risk that’s not worth taking, we won’t take it.”
Brendon McCullum suggests New Zealand may err on the side of caution with Tim Southee’s ankle injury, with a World Cup on the horizon.

“I look to score runs and try to be positive. That has always been the strength for me, regardless of the situation and conditions. I stick to that game plan and it has worked well.”
Angelo Mathews lays out the simple approach that has brought him success all over the world in the past year.

Courtesy: Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo’s Sri Lanka correspondent. @andrewffernando

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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New Zealand vs Sri Lanka: Record-breaker Brendon McCullum belts 195 off 134 balls

Posted on 26 December 2014 by admin

  • New Zealand 429 for seven against Sri Lanka.
  • Brendon McCullum makes 195 from 134 balls.

New Zealand’s Brendon McCullum was back in destructive form as he hit 18 fours and 11 sixes in a 134-ball innings of 195 on the first day of the first Test against Sri Lanka in Christchurch. He was also on course to beat the fastest Test double century (off 153 balls) before holing out to long off. But the prolific batsman did become the first New Zealander to pass 1,000 runs in a calendar year when he hit his first six, broke his own 78-ball New Zealand record for a fastest century in Tests by four balls and ended the innings with 1,164 runs in the year with the chance of another bat. He has already passed 200 runs three times in 2014, scoring 224 and 302 against India at the start of the year and 202 against Pakistan in his last Test, last month.

Brendon McCullum came within a shot of breaking the world record for the fastest Test double century as he bludgeoned Sri Lanka’s attack around Hagley Oval in Christchurch to lead New Zealand to 429 for seven on the first day of the first Test. The captain had reached 195 from 134 balls when he was caught in the deep by Dimuth Karaunaratne off the debutant spinner Tharindu Kaushal in front of a capacity 8,000 crowd at the redeveloped stadium in the city’s first Test since the 2011 earthquake. Nathan Astle set the existing record in 2002, taking 153 balls to reach his double century against England at Lancaster Park, which fell victim to the earthquake. Don Bradman scored 200 in 214 minutes against England at Headingley in 1930, moreover; when McCullum was out in the 66th over he still had 12 minutes to eclipse that time.

Yesterday, his best stand was 153 for the fifth wicket with Jimmy Neesham, the pair scoring at 7.84 an over while together. Neesham would make 85 from 80 and Kane Williamson a more considered 54 from 98 as New Zealand finished the day on 429 for 7. Sri Lanka had looked in charge at one point, though, reducing the hosts to 60 for 2 and 80 for 3, but after that it went downhill. There were teething problems for the redeveloped Hagley Oval, with both opening bowlers losing their footing, but they were soon fixed. In Melbourne, Australia stand-in captain Steven Smith passed 1,000 Test runs for the year as he guided his team to 259 for 5 on the opening day of the third Test against India. Smith made an unbeaten 72 in Melbourne and resumed day two with Brad Haddin (23). Opener Dean Elgar struck his third Test century as South Africa rode their luck to finish the first day of the second Test against West Indies on 270 for 2. Elgar, who came into the match with his position under scrutiny, scored 121 as he shared a second-wicket partnership of 179 with Faf du Plessis which frustrated the tourists who were the architects of their own downfall as they let numerous chances slip in the field. Du Plessis will resume on 99 along with Proteas captain Hashim Amla, who scored a double-century in the first Test in Pretoria and has reached 17.

 

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