England rip through Sri Lanka top order to take command of second Test

England took six quick wickets on 4yh day of the second Test.— Twitter
England took six quick wickets on 4yh day of the second Test.— Twitter

Galle - Sri Lanka were reeling at 67-6 at lunch,

By Reuters

Published: Mon 25 Jan 2021, 11:45 AM

England took six quick wickets as they ripped through Sri Lanka’s top order on the fourth day of the second Test at Galle International Stadium on Monday, putting themselves in a strong position to go on and sweep the series.

Sri Lanka were reeling at 67-6 at lunch, 104 runs ahead after dismissing England for 344 in their first innings earlier in the day.

Any hope the hosts had of setting England a daunting target on a difficult wicket were undone as spinners Dom Bess (3-22) and Jack Leach (3-27) wreaked havoc.

Debutant Ramesh Mendis (11 not out) and Dilruwan Perera (one not out) will resume after lunch but they are the last two recognised batsmen.

England, who won last week’s first test by seven wickets, resumed on 339-9 but added only five runs in 11 balls before Leach was the last man dismissed, leg before wicket to Dilruwan Perera.

It left England trailing by 37 runs after Sri Lanka had scored 381 in their first innings.

England’s spin twins, neither of whom took a wicket in the first innings, then set about the Sri Lanka batting with Leach trapping Kusal Perera (14) before Bess had Oshada Fernando (three) caught at short leg by Zac Crawley.

Crawley took another fine catch close in, this time off the bowling of Leach, as Lahiru Thirimanne was next to depart for 13 runs to leave Sri Lanka 37-3.

Angelo Mathews then slogged at a delivery that Bess tossed up and missed it, to be clean bowled for five, and Sri Lanka were 47-5 when stand-in captain Dinesh Chandimal tried to knock Leach out of the park but succeeded only in top-edging and was caught by James Anderson.

Niroshan Dickwella (seven) hit the ball straight to Dan Lawrence at cover to be the sixth batsman sent back to the pavilion.

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