Sri Lanka v England, 1st Test, Galle, 3rd day March 28, 2012

Long wait for Panesar and England

ESPNcricinfo presents the Plays of the Day from the third day of the first Test in Galle

Belated success of the day
Monty Panesar took wickets for fun on his return to the Test side in the UAE but found life harder in Galle. In fact, he was probably getting quite fed up with the venue. In the 2007 Test he went wicketless as Sri Lanka piled up nearly 500. Finally, though, he opened his account in the 60th over he had bowled at the ground when Dinesh Chandimal played his second poor shot of the match and lofted a catch to mid-off.

No-ball of the day
The lead was already 293 - very healthy but still below the psychological 300-mark - when Prasanna Jayawardene top-edged a pull which looped back to Stuart Broad who took the return catch easily. All the players were making their way off, but umpire Rod Tucker wanted to check the front line and replays showed Broad had overstepped by a long way - his eighth no-ball of the match. Jayawardene had a life and made England pay.

Wagging of the day
England have a very productive lower order - and it played its part again in the first innings - but they have also been on the receiving end. In the first innings the last two wickets added 65 and this time it amounted to a spirit-crushing 87. For Jayawardene to score runs is one thing, but to see Chanaka Welegedera and Suranga Lakmal make 26 from 82 deliveries between them will have really hurt.

Vain attempt of the day
Samit Patel is certainly no like-for-like replacement in the field for Eoin Morgan, but he has not let England down on his debut. He has dived around at backward point and sprinted hard in the outfield. For a moment it looked like he would take the catch to finally end Sri Lanka's second innings as he steadied himself under a slog-sweep from Jayawardene. However, the rope was always very close and as Patel took the catch he stepped on the boundary. He tried to toss the ball away to at least save the six but it was too late.

Debate of the day
Yes, it is the DRS again. Firstly Suraj Randiv was given lbw on the field and the decision was upheld with the ball feathering the bails. Such margins will give ICC food for thought at their next meeting where the DRS is due to be discussed. Then came Alastair Cook's dismissal, given not out on the field and overturned when the third umpire said he could see a deviation. There is no HotSpot for this series, but audio is available. Cook, although disappointed to be out, did not look overly annoyed at the decision.

Field of the day
Sri Lanka have done their homework on England's struggling batsmen. This was never more apparent than the field to Jonathan Trott when he was surrounded by a short leg, leg slip and two short midwickets facing Tillakaratne Dilshan. No one was catching on the off side with only two men patrolling the covers. Mahela Jayawardene was basically saying to Trott that he thought the batsman had one scoring area against the spin and would wait for him to crack.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • John on March 29, 2012, 4:18 GMT

    @johnathonjosephs, hear hear. If a batsman was given not out by the on-field umpire and that decision was overturned based on HawkEye showing the ball just clipping the bails then that would be a worry. All third umpire decisions based on HawkEye have an inbuilt margin of error. The commentators keep on talking about it but apparently many people refuse to listen. Randiv was given out and HawkEye could not say within an acceptable margin of error that that decision was wrong so the decision stands. If the original decision was not out then that too would stand on review to to lack of inconclusive evidence to the contrary. You can't accuse DRS of being deficient when it basically said "that's a line-ball decision so we'll go with the on-field umpire". It was the same result as it would have been with no DRS so what's the problem? Either DRS is 100% right and the ball was hitting the stumps so he was out or else it's about right and so let's take the umpire's word. It's out either way.

  • Johnathon on March 29, 2012, 1:46 GMT

    The UDRS decision on Randiv is not really a problem. Before people can criticize the system, you really need to understand how it works. The ball tracking is not 100% accurate, there is a small percentage of margin of error. Thus, when the ball looks like its just going over the stumps, an umpire does not have absolutely 100% evidence that the ball is going over. Calculate margin of error and it could just clip the bails. That's why it is still given out. You need to stop watching what is shown and understand the mathematical/scientific principles. Danny Morrison said it beautifully during the tour of SA in NZ

  • John on March 29, 2012, 0:44 GMT

    @simonviller, I don't agree with that. In fact, I don't think that on-field umpires should be responsible for calling no-balls at all. We're happy to criticise an umpire for making an incorrect decision on a close LBW or the like, yet we expect them to do so after having been looking down at the crease at the bowler's end a split second earlier. I think all front-foot no ball decisions should be made by the third umpire if the appropriate cameras are available. The fact that quite a few batsmen have been recalled due to no-balls lately makes me wonder how many no-balls umpires actually miss. Quite a few I'd say, but I don't really hold it against them. This is one area where technology can definitely do a better job and should be used. It will lead to more reliable decisions on no-balls and dismissals.

  • Sharon on March 28, 2012, 22:02 GMT

    It would be very remarkable if England were to win this one. But why not. Herath can't bowl both end. Also Herath not that good only inept England make him look. Ball soft now easy to play. KP and Trott both owe England big time after rubbish in UAE. England get to lunch only lose 1 take score to 190/3 - why should it not be possible to score further 150 for loss of 7 wicket eh? It is possible but is big ask. One last thing did NOT llike Sri Lanka player running on the pitch when making appeal. Bad sport very bad unneccessary.

  • Pankaj on March 28, 2012, 21:53 GMT

    Here's my take on how DRS should be implemented. The way I see it every batsman deserves a chance to ratify any doubtful decision, so instead of 3 per team make it 1 per batsman as a referral quota, this way each batsman gets a fair chance - average time would be say 10 times 2 which is around 20minutes of playing time per innings - this can be afforded especially where decisions tend to change the course of a match and more importantly make/mar a batsman's careeer. In fact have a time limit on the 3rd umpire's ruling - ;et it not be more than 2minutes, this will help getting on with the game. With probably more time being spent deciding whether a ball crossed the ropes or not, I think its worth considering 1referral (unsuccessful) per batsman per innings. For the fielding side let there be similarly 1 referrral per batsman with a penalty of 4 penalty runs per unsuccessful referral just to make things interesting and the fielding captain think.

  • Andrew on March 28, 2012, 20:32 GMT

    Interesting day 4 in store. If it wasn't for history, you would say England should win from here. The key for SL to win, is to keep things very tight. This match should be decided today, but it if SL keep it tight & let the pitch age further, SL will take the upper hand. Good batting by Trott & KP. == == == This chase is at the outer edge of possibility for England, however, being only 2 wickets down has swung this. England need a bit more from KP & Trott & at least one other decent partnership to win. I think these two will do well == == == I think SL will rue 3 run outs in this test. Two of them quality batsmen, another 50 to 100 runs would of put this match beyond England.

  • Mark on March 28, 2012, 20:15 GMT

    Sri Lanka is in the Driving seat and should win the test match tomorrow unless Trott, KP and Bell have other ideas. Still its been a great test match, however I feel unless Sri Lanka bowl poorly that Sri Lanka have won the Galle encounter, but its been a great test match (minus the poor batting) to follow.

  • Victor on March 28, 2012, 18:31 GMT


    Didn't Perera nick it to slip and claim it didn't carry? Bit different.


    Good comment. I think England are still about 80-120 runs adrift though. If they get through the first session tomorrow for the loss of only one wicket then it will be game on. That is a big "if". But it only takes one of the batters to have a good day.

    There is potential for tomorrow to be an absolutely riveting day's cricket.

  • vic tor on March 28, 2012, 17:20 GMT

    Praveen Shavindra Muthuthanthri...'Cook didn't walk, so now what is Swann saying? he made a big deal about Dilruwan perera not walking in the practice game.' I made a comment then about this, and I'll say this again. Swann just lets off steam when it happens against England, but ofcourse will remain mum when the tables are turned. I said that all teams use whatever tactics they can, to win, and even stated that when a batsman has not nicked the ball, and is wrongly given out by the umpire, the opposition team will never, repeat never, call that batsman back. Over the years, players will appeal for anything, and if they get a decision in their favour, so be it. Being honest doesn't come into it, except for a few players like Gilchrist and Lara who always walked if they felt they nicked it. Even Tendulkar doesn`t walk. He says that there are times when he has been wrongly given out, and therefore he feels that right or wrong, the decision rests with the umpires, and rightly so.

  • charlie on March 28, 2012, 15:38 GMT

    I think an umpire should not be allowed to delay a decision pending a no-ball review ,since he should have called it in the first place .

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