Sri Lanka v England 2007-08 / News

Sri Lanka v England, 2nd Test, Colombo, 4th day

Jayawardene targets series victory

Sa'adi Thawfeeq

December 12, 2007

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Prasanna Jayawardene proved a thorn in England's side as Sri Lanka built a strong lead © Getty Images
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Prasanna Jayawardene has impressed during the first two Tests against England with his sharp glove work and resilient batting. On the second day at the SSC his 79 helped Sri Lanka build a lead of 197 and Jayawardene says there is plenty of opportunity for the team to push for a series-winning victory.

"We think the lead of 197 is more than sufficient for us to bowl England out again in the second innings," he said. "We must try to bowl to that total and try and win. That's our plan. We are looking at winning here and going to Galle 2-0 up in the series.

"This pitch is slower than we thought it to be, but Murali is bowling brilliantly and we have to support him. We are almost 200 ahead and this wicket is not easy to bat on against Murali. If we keep doing the good things and have bowling partnerships we can achieve what we want."

Sri Lanka batted until after tea on the fourth day raising questions as to whether they had left themselves enough time to bowl England out. Similarly defensive batting almost came back to haunt them in the first Test before they won with about 20 minutes remaining.

"Our plan was to bat throughout the day today and set a good target for England," explained Jayawardene. "We were not in any great hurry. My job was to bat from one end until we reached that target."

Jayawardene's success is allowing Kumar Sangakkara to concentrate on his prolific form and he knows his all-round role is vital to Sri Lanka. "Every Test is important to me. What is expected from me is to keep wickets and help Sangakkara," he said. "He is our main batsman and he must be kept fresh when he goes out to bat so that we can get the best out of him. While keeping wickets I am also expected to contribute runs with the bat."

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