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Plays of the day from the first day of the first Sri Lanka-Bangladesh Test in Galle
Andrew Fidel Fernando and Mohammad Isam
March 8, 2013
Sri Lanka batsmen's bones seem to have been particularly susceptible to upset in the past three months, with Kumar Sangakkara, Prasanna Jayawardene, Nuwan Kulasekara and Mahela Jayawardene all missing Tests due to fractures, and when Dimuth Karunaratne was hit flush on the elbow by a Shahadat Hossain bouncer on 15, he too must have wondered if the same fate would befall him. The outlook seemed grim when Sri Lanka's physio took one look at the elbow and took Karunaratne off the field, but despite the scare, he returned later in the session to add 26 more runs to his tally.
A cover drive is generally the most alluring stroke in any Sangakkara innings, but though there were plenty of those off the spinners, it was a hook shot that epitomised his mastery of the Bangladesh bowling on day one. Twice Shahadat Hossain tried to bounce him in the 35th over, and both times Sangakkara rocked back in an instant and sent the ball screaming in front of square leg, all along the ground.
Of all the fielders, Mohammad Ashraful would know the significance of a Sangakkara wicket, having seen him score two previous double-centuries within a week five years ago. But his slight delay to jump and reach the batsman's lofted shot cost Bangladesh.
Sangakkara, though, added only 31 more before Jahurul Islam caught him at short cover, on the second attempt after parrying the ball with both hands.
Sohag Gazi was the day's best bowler, and his dismissal of Dimuth Karunaratne had him beating a batsman after working him over.
Gazi kept the ball up to Karunaratne, the lesser experienced of the two left-hand batsmen at the crease (the other being Sangakkara), and whenever the batsmen drove, he had a small smile on his face. He bowled him a maiden over late in the first session, and kept pegging away until in his 14th over when he brought one back at the batsman. The appeal wasn't too long as the decision was quick, and it was one of the few bright spots of the day for the visitors.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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