Sir Paul Getty's XI v Sri Lankans, Wormsley May 3, 2006

Northeast underlines his class

Cricinfo staff

Sir Paul Getty's XI 195 for 6 (Northeast 62*, Dennington 34; Muralitharan 2-16) beat Sri Lankans 179 (Jayawardena 33, Kulasekera 30*, Muralitharan 30, Magoffin 4-14, Gidman 3-30)

The Sri Lankans lost their lowest-profile warm-up game, against Sir Paul Getty's XI, by 16 runs. Amid such beautiful surroundings - even on a cold and grey May day - the cricket, for the last time on the tour, was almost of secondary importance.

The headlines belonged to the youngest player in the match, 16-year-old Sam Northeast, a Harrow schoolboy who top scored for Getty's XI with an unbeaten 62. Northeast has been getting a fair amount of attention - he scored 96 on his debut for Kent 2nd XI against Durham last summer - and on the evidence of this innings, it is not hard to see why. It was fitting that he played here as he was in the Harrow side that was on tour in Galle when the tsunami hit Sri Lanka in December 2004.

The Wormsley pitch is usually one to break the hearts of any bowler, but so early in the season it was the batsmen who found the going harder. Northeast batted throughout the Getty innings, facing 143 balls in all, and keeping his head as other more familiar names - Graeme Hick (8) and Tatenda Taibu (16) - came and went in an innings of 195 for 6 from 50 overs.

The Sri Lankans batting has failed to ignite so far, and once again they struggled, with Western Australia's Steve Magoffin putting the skids under them with 4 for 14 and then William Gidman cashing in with three late wickets.