Sri Lanka v England, 2nd Test, Colombo, 1st day April 3, 2012

Millions of runs for Jayawardene

ESPNcricinfo presents the Plays of the Day from the first day of the second Test in Colombo
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Milestone (or not) of the day
When Sri Lanka moved to 38, with a square cut by Mahela Jayawardene, it brought up the two millionth run in Test cricket. Not everyone, though, will agree. All Test statistics, and this was a problem when the 2000th Test was celebrated at Lord's last year, included the Australia verses World XI match at Sydney in 2005. Many feel that it should not be included in records because it wasn't between two Full Member teams. They have a point, too.

Juggle of the day
When Kumar Sangakkara edged his first ball from James Anderson towards first slip it looked a fairly regulation catch for Andrew Strauss. But it burst out of his hands and was a fraction of a millisecond away from hitting the turf to add to the pressure on Strauss' shoulders. This wasn't the day for the England captain to drop catches so Strauss clutched the ball at the second attempt and was mobbed by his team-mates. It was a second golden duck in three innings for Sangakkara.

Review of the day
With the partnership between Jayawardene and Thilan Samaraweera building England were desperate for a breakthrough. Steven Finn made one climb towards Samaraweera's ribs, no mean feat on this pitch, and it ballooned out to Alastair Cook at short leg. England appeared confident and when umpire Asad Rauf said not out they asked for the DRS. It was a lengthy process by TV umpire Rod Tucker who could hear a noise but without Hot Spot it was impossible say if glove was involved. Andy Flower wasn't impressed and made a visit to the third umpire's room.

Blow of the day
Once the hardness had disappeared from the new ball this became a tough pitch for the fast bowlers. So it was a notable effort by Steven Finn to strike Samaraweera on the helmet with a short delivery. In truth, it was not very well played by Samaraweera who turned his head away from the ball which looped rather than leapt from the surface. He appeared a little dazed after the blow but following a few moments to compose himself was soon back behind the line.

Near-miss of the day
Anderson was in the midst of a superb post-tea spell of reverse swing when he found the edge of Jayawardene's bat with him on 79. The edge flew low to the left of Strauss who, by now, was stood at a lone wide first slip rather than the conventional position. Strauss flung his left hand out but didn't get anything on the ball as it raced to the boundary.

Double-edged sword of the day
You could understand England's celebrations at finally removing Jayawardene late in the day but closer inspection of the dismissal suggested it was not all good news for the visitors. The delivery from round the wicket by Graeme Swann spun sharply from off stump and would have hit leg. Swann is a big spinner of the ball but this was also the pitch helping. And it was only the first day.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • denwarlo70 on April 4, 2012, 5:05 GMT

    Andy Flower has always been a cry baby. The guy never grows up. I remember he having endless arguments (standing behind the stumps) with Arjuna Ranatunga back in the day when umpires turn down decisions. As a professional, he should remove that label and move on.

  • Meety on April 4, 2012, 2:36 GMT

    @AdrianVanDenStael - IMO - the Super Tests during world series should be included, they were as harder (or harder), than anything before or since!!! == == == Re: Andy Flower - it is not a good look going in to the Umpire's room after a review, & I think there should be some guidelines regarding this. For all we know Flower could of been discussing the weather or the price of tea in China, but we all know it would of been about the decision-making process. IMO - this should be left till a Lunch Break or after play finishes for the day. The Umpires, Captains & Head Coaches can be de-briefed at the same time. The de-briefing will not be a time to complain, but merely to be informed of the mechanics of the decion making. Complaints can be forwarded to the Match Referee - NOT the Umpires. This should allow Umpires to be unfettered in their decion making process (i.e not having a Coach or Captains words ringing in their ears out on the field). I'll give benefit of the doubt to Flower.

  • the_blue_android on April 4, 2012, 1:47 GMT

    I somehow think Andy Flower is related to Stuart Broad. They both have very similar personalities, that of a 7 yr old child.

  • the_blue_android on April 4, 2012, 1:44 GMT

    Make Andy Flower the 3rd umpire and save some cash. He seems to spend more time in the third umpires room more than the dressing room anyway. Or the third umpire can give the keys to Andy on day of test match.

  • dummy4fb on April 4, 2012, 0:14 GMT

    Maybe Andy Flower was visiting the 3rd Umpire's room to clarify why Cook was giving out in the first test on inconclusive evidence for a catch but then yesterday Samaraweera wasn't...

  • Venki_indian on April 3, 2012, 23:31 GMT

    BCCI is always right about DRS..they are not against DRS but they want it to get stream lined and implement...almost every test match has contravesial decisions happening with DRS...and English are happy with DRS when they are winning.

  • brittop on April 3, 2012, 22:54 GMT

    @Nick Taplin: Have to disagree with you - don't think the coach or the players on the field for that matter should ask why a decision has been made. Thinking about it. the umpire's only answer can be "because I thought it was out/not out".

  • brittop on April 3, 2012, 22:51 GMT

    @SSRajan: But the ICC could change it's mind as with the 1970 Eng v RoW series. Also what makes you think it's only Brits that want to change it? Is it because you think that whatever you say is true and should be accepted without question?

  • dummy4fb on April 3, 2012, 20:37 GMT

    Nick, I understand that decision of the umpire cannot be overturned. But this will set up a bad precedent. What if every coach at every marginal decision start to visit the Third Umpire? In last England tour with hot spot and all available technology been used Sanga was given out caught behind in the first innings of first test with no hot spot mark on the bat but purely based on sound. This time it was the other way. The two officials were different on those two occasions. Even players get fined if they start arguing on umpiring decisions, hesitate to walk when given out or try to influence umpire's decision in some other way. The coach should set a good example to players. So there is nothing wrong in at least reprimanding the coach.

  • dummy4fb on April 3, 2012, 18:36 GMT

    they should put the hot spot and also the snicko i dont know why

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