England U19 v Sri Lanka U19, 1st Test, Northampton, 3rd day July 23, 2010

Peiris keeps Sri Lanka level

Cricinfo staff

Sri Lanka U19s 287 and 269 for 6 (Rajakaruna 13*, Peiris 13*, Ball 2-23) lead England U19s 286 (Javid 90, Rafiq 82, Peiris 5-44) by 270 runs

In a match that continues to swing between two evenly-matched sides, Sri Lanka Under-19s ended the third day at Northampton with a lead of 270 after Chathura Peiris's left-arm seamers kept England Under-19s to 286. The hosts had been well-positioned on 255 for 5 overnight but Peiris added three wickets to his tally to scythe through the lower order and finish with 5 for 44.

England fought back almost immediately, as opener Yasoda Lanka was sent back by Atif Sheikh in the fifth over of Sri Lanka's second innings. Ramith Rambukwella and Bhanuka Rajapaksa steadied the ship with a 74-run stand, but after Rambukwella was bowled by Matt Dunn for a patient 31 England steadily chipped away at the middle order.

Rajapaksa found an able partner in Kithuruwan Vithanage, adding a further 46 for the fourth wicket before he fell just three runs short of a century, departing to Azeem Rafiq's offbreaks. Vithanage then raced to 48 with seven fours and a six before he was undone by Jacob Ball's medium pace. Ball had Nipun Karunanayake caught behind for 22 not long after, but Denuwan Rajakaruna and Peiris held firm until stumps with a 19-run stand.

England had been poised to bat Sri Lanka out of the game when play resumed this morning with Ateeq Javid and Rafiq well set on unbeaten 70s, but when Rafiq was bowled by Sanitha de Mel England's lower order quickly folded. Adam Rouse, Ball and Sheikh were all dispatched in one over from Peiris, who then combined with de Mel to get rid of Javid for 90 to bring the innings to a close.