Sri Lanka v England, 1st Test, Galle, 4th day March 29, 2012

Herath joins small group

Madhusudhan Ramakrishnan
Stats from the fourth day of a spin-dominated first Test in Galle

After losing their previous four series, Sri Lanka have finally started a series with a win, beating England by 75 runs. Here are stats highlights from an interesting fourth day in Galle

  • Sri Lanka's win is their seventh against England and their fifth against them in home Tests. Their last defeat against England at home came at the SSC in the 2001 series. Sri Lanka's win is only their second since Muttiah Muralitharan's retirement and their first at home. England have now gone on to lose four consecutive Tests. This is the first such sequence for them after the 0-5 whitewash in Australia in 2006-07.

  • Rangana Herath's performance is his best in Tests. His 12-wicket haul makes him only the fifth Sri Lanka bowler to pick up ten wickets in a match. Muralitharan has picked up 22 of the 27 ten-wicket hauls by Sri Lanka bowlers. There have been only seven previous occasions when a spinner has achieved better match-figures in a Test against England. Herath's 12 for 171 is second only to Muralitharan's 13 for 171 among best bowling performances in Galle. Herath's match-figures are also the second best for a left-arm spinner against England, after Vinoo Mankad's 12 for 108 in 1952.

  • Jonathan Trott became only the fourth England batsman, and the first since Nasser Hussain (in 2001), to score a fourth-innings century in the subcontinent. His century is also the seventh by an England batsman in Sri Lanka. The previous one was scored by Alastair Cook in Galle in 2007. Trott also joins Cook and Marcus Trescothick on the list of 15 England batsmen (17 instances) to score a century in a defeat in the fourth innings.

  • Galle once again proved to be a result-oriented venue. Six out of the last seven matches there have produced a result. Overall, Galle stands joint-second with Kandy among Sri Lankan grounds with the lowest draw percentage (minimum five matches played) since 2000. England's total of 264 is the highest fourth-innings total in Galle, surpassing the 253 made by Sri Lanka in their loss to Australia last year. It is the fourth-highest fourth-innings total in a defeat in Tests played in Sri Lanka since 2000.

  • Twenty-eight wickets fell to spinners in the match. This is joint third-highest on the list of most wickets falling to spinners in a game in Sri Lanka. The Sri Lanka spinners, led by Herath, picked up 18 of the 20 England wickets. There have been only three previous occasions (two in Galle) when Sri Lanka spinners have picked up more wickets (19) in a match.

  • From a total of 233 for 4, England lost their last six wickets for just 31 runs to be dismissed for 264. Only once before against Sri Lanka (Galle in 2001) have England aggregated fewer runs (22) for the last five wickets. Their lowest aggregate in an innings for the last five wickets in Tests since 2000 is 14, in Mohali in 2001.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Kas on March 30, 2012, 17:03 GMT

    Sl good win, but like what others here have stated our pace attack is very weak. We need to do something about it. IMO we need to play either kulasekara or shaminda erranga along with welegedara.

  • Dummy4 on March 30, 2012, 11:22 GMT

    @AdrianVanDenStael, you are spot on mate.

  • Dru on March 30, 2012, 8:07 GMT

    I have to agree with some of the thoughts here that it was a good win for SL who showed some real metal but there are some serious issues around the corner. Herath is 34 and the big 4 in the batting line up are all over 35. Fast bowlers look pie throwers at best so unless there is some hidden talent in local cricket SL needs to ensure there is not void left with by the older players. One thing SL are good at is making the most of what little they have and this includes talent and opportunity. I read in amusement that Patel had special sessions in Brisbane to get used to the heat - SL will never have such opportunities. If you look at the Eng bench, Finn and Bresnan cant get a game and - no such issues for SL!

  • Dummy4 on March 30, 2012, 3:06 GMT

    Good win and deserving win for SL. Engalnd made too many errors as mentioned by their skipper. However the issue with SL is their pace attack, opening batters and even middle order for that matter. Sangakarra, Mahela, Samarweera are all around 35 and will move on in may be couple of years. With the exception of Chandimal & to an extent Chamara Silva there aren't too many worthy batters going around. SL have more issues to resolve despite the win. In many ways SL is a bit like India. Win at home and they forget most of the issues but the real issue will be when they tour. Yes they did win against SAF but really they have got issues to solve. Their pace attack in particular is meat and drink for a good Test team.

  • Peter on March 29, 2012, 23:58 GMT

    I have to also add, great test match strip prepared by the curators. Whilst it did spin, it wasn't excessive nor was it a minefield. I still believe that this venue has the makings of a great pace wicket. It is perfectly located to the sea, gets enough rain, conditions seem perfect for a lightning fast wicket. If the SL board got serious about their pace bowling future, they could do worse than looking at this venie, using it for their domestic competition until their pace bowlers develop enough to mix it at test level. And another positive would be that their batrsmen could play on quick surfaces, and they could use this venie against sides that may struggle on quick wiockets. Just a thought.

  • Peter on March 29, 2012, 23:52 GMT

    Spot on @Meety. Whilst a good, tough win, put in perspective, Mahela got dropped 4 times, any of which would have lost them the game. They got handled pretty well by a transitioning, below strength Aussie side in their own back yard, whilst you just about nailed their impending problems with their pace attack. And let's not forget, Herath is 34 this year, hardly the shining light for a future of upward development. The Lankans will always be a tough proposition at home, I rate our victory over them tremendous achievement, but a "great team"? A long way short of that.

  • David on March 29, 2012, 23:50 GMT

    OTHER Stats. Much talk of frail England batting, & much hype about their bowling. Stats debunk both. Eng's top 6 bat ave beat SL's - 168.5 to 166.5. Eng's top 6 bats posted the record 4th inngs total in Galle! No's 1-6 CAN compete in the sub-continent. What about no's 7 to 11? Eng's last 5 bat ave: 55. SL's ave: 85.5. Eng's bowlers outclassed at bat - 2nd inngs collapse, 5 for 18, gave the test to SL. The same 5, Eng's vaunted bowling, were feeble with the ball: match bowling figs of 17 for 532, ave 31.29. SL bowlers - 20 for 457, ave 22.85! Huge difference! Eng conceded 18 more extras than SL. Broad: 1 wide, 8 no-balls. His no-ball reprieved Prasanna, gifting SL 44 more, ultimately costing Eng 64 runs, 11 LESS THAN THE MARGIN OF VICTORY! ("Broad the enforcer" is really "Broad the bigfoot!") Swann, day 3, claimed "We are favorites. I don't like stats. History is there to be rewritten." Stats, & History, show that England's batsmen held their own, and their bowlers lost this test!

  • Andrew on March 29, 2012, 20:41 GMT

    @Sinhaya - it was a good win, but SL have a lot to improve on before they come close to great. Their pace bowling attack is about the worst in Tests, marginally better than a full strength Bangladesh. Herath does look like he is stepping up, but he needs a spearhead to be more effective. Though it was a good win!

  • Dummy4 on March 29, 2012, 20:26 GMT

    How in gods sake was Herath dropped for the Asia cup.

  • Randika on March 29, 2012, 17:28 GMT

    The most compelling stat is the percentage of results in tests in Sri Lanka! For all the talk of flat tracks in the sub-continent Sri Lanka once again prove that they are not part of any sub-continent body and soul.

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