Sri Lanka v New Zealand, 1st Test, Galle, 3rd day

Herath delivers crushing win for Sri Lanka

The Report by Siddhartha Talya

November 19, 2012

Comments: 60 | Text size: A | A

Sri Lanka 247 (Mahela Jayawardene 91, Mathews 79, Southee 4-46) and 93 for 0 (Karunaratne 60*, Paranavitana 31*) beat New Zealand 221 (McCullum 68, Flynn 53, Herath 5-65) and 118 (Flynn 20, Herath 6-43) by 10 wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details


Doug Bracewell was trapped in front first ball, Sri Lanka v New Zealand, 1st Test, Galle, 3rd day, November 19, 2012
Doug Bracewell was one of Rangana Herath's six victims © Associated Press
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A day that began on even terms finished being one-sided. New Zealand's fast-bowling stocks may be promising but their batting continued to be a serious worry and it let them down again, on a day when they had the rare chance of pressing ahead and aiming for a win. They slumped to a fifth straight Test defeat in conditions far less lethal than their scoreline suggested. The batsmen were largely victims of their own approach and lack of confidence against spin on a slow and low pitch.

Rangana Herath was again the wrecker-in-chief, continuing his incredible run in Galle, and finished with 11 wickets in the match. Both his hauls of ten wickets or more in a Test have come in Galle, where he's picked up 46 in eight games at 20.30, including five of his 12 five-fors. His achievement wasn't a surprise, certainly not against an opposition whose performances against spin have been woeful in the recent past. In their last five Tests, all of them defeats, they've lost 62 wickets out of 100 to spin. Only one of those games went into the fifth day.

Sri Lanka were disciplined and cut down drastically on the bad deliveries they had delivered on the opening day when Brendon McCullum and Daniel Flynn had managed to find some release after the loss of early wickets. There was hardly any swing or movement for the seamers, and the ball never carried to slip, though the spinners found a fair amount of turn. The overall result of their tight lines and variations in pace and length was a stagnating run-flow and an eventual collapse.

At a time when New Zealand would have been aiming to begin solidly and lay a platform for a challenging lead, they were hit by a Nuwan Kulasekara double-strike. Martin Guptill was dismissed in a manner similar to the first innings, when he played down the wrong line, only this time he was bowled. Kane Williamson was a touch unfortunate to be caught down the leg side, when he tried to glide one down to fine leg and New Zealand were reduced to 46 for 3.

Ross Taylor square-drove the seamers for two fours and looked comfortable against Herath while defending, and he and Flynn appeared to infuse a bit of urgency to an innings that badly needed a fillip. But there remained some uncertainty against the spinners. Herath got one to spit away and bounce past Taylor's bat, and that may have played on the batsman's mind when, shortly after, he misread an arm ball from Herath to be trapped in front.

James Franklin had spent some time on the pitch before the start of play, standing on the crease and scanning the areas he could score off. He appeared to come out with a plan, as he stepped out to Herath, often to try working him on to the leg side. That prompted Mahela Jayawardene to employ two midwickets for him, but Franklin was undeterred. It did not pay, as he was beaten in flight to be stumped, albeit unconvincingly, by Prasanna Jayawardene - he failed to collect but the ball ricocheted off his chest and dislodged the bails.

Flynn was the most confident and enterprising of New Zealand's batsmen today, picking out midwicket as a favoured scoring area, fetching deliveries from outside off, piercing the field on either side of the wicket and trying his utmost to rotate the strike. But he was taken by surprise as Herath turned one in sharply and bowled him through the gate. When Doug Bracewell failed to pick an arm ball next ball, the end was nigh for New Zealand. The desperation to stretch the lead and give themselves something to bowl at was evident when Tim Southee and Trent Boult went over the top and struck three sixes between them, but they too succumbed to spin, only managing to extend the advantage to 92 runs.

An early burst from the seamers was New Zealand's only hope - somewhat dented from the outset by Tim Southee's absence due to a niggle - but a presumably nervous Sri Lanka opening partnership, on a pair, ensured the chase was smooth. Tharanga Paranavitana had just one half-century in his previous 11 innings and would have been under pressure. He was subdued to begin with but eventually got going, using his feet well against Jeetan Patel to launch him for six, before smashing Bracewell over point towards the close. He stayed through to the end of the chase, but it'll be interesting to see how the combination changes should Tillakaratne Dilshan return to the line-up in the next Test.

Paranavitana could face competition for that opening slot from the debutant Dimuth Karunaratne, who did his own prospects no harm with an attractive half-century. He was edgy at the start but looked strong on the back foot, punching boundaries through midwicket and extra cover and even pulling in the direction of square leg. He also cashed in on some freebies on leg stump and eased to a maiden fifty.

The day was a fulfilling one for Sri Lanka, and the hope of a closely-fought game raised by New Zealand proved deceptive in the end.

Siddhartha Talya is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by Prem2248 on (November 20, 2012, 17:28 GMT)

and all other teams too have gone there one month in advance and played at least 4 practice matches, whereas SL was sent one week before the Tournament, could play only 2 practice matches. If we have had a proper administration as they have in England and a media the likes of India, the beating us would be only a dream for all other countries. Just before degrading us please verify the records that we're holding, (a) 4 times Semi-Finalists & (b) 3 times Finalists of the WCs, We are the holders of the highest Scores, in all 3 forms of the Game at the moment and it was only a SLan that has a scored double century in a T/20 match of a Minor -County tournament in England, who was never picked for any National side. We are doing all this without the best players produced by schools not being picked (and very little money spent on players), due to the ignorance of J&Ps of last 25 years. One may find 4-5 henchmen in every SLan National side. (Stats courtesy Cric Info).

Posted by Prem2248 on (November 20, 2012, 17:28 GMT)

Our Under-19 Teams' performances too have been badly affected by the bias selections and the teams picked too have not been given proper training before a tournament, none of the U-19 players picked have any sort of 1st class experience, they're just schoolboy cricketers, whereas the other countries give right training for their youth, their players are given numerous match practices before a tournament and they get equal treatment that the seniors are given. e.g. The ENG, AUS, NZ & IND were arranged a proper match practice just prior to the Youth WC in Australia by arranging 4 nation tournament by their respective Cricket Managements(to be CNTD)

Posted by Prem2248 on (November 20, 2012, 17:27 GMT)

"To the Editor! You've published only a part of my response in relation to an erroneous comment made by one SHORTSILLYPOINT. Without the 1st part my whole comment is quite meaningless. Pls be good enough to published the whole comment" To Mr shortsillypoint: Your comment is not agreeable to us SLans , you have to get your stats verified before making a comment, this particular match where MCrowe got 299 was a drawn game in which our great Aravinda answered them in scoring a 267. For your information we've won 6 Tests, 5 drawn out of 14 Tests played so far against NZ. Not only NZ even England, SA have found it difficult to beat us. We could have done far better than this if we have had proper administration in place. The Country's Cricket has been managed poorly for the last 25 years as a result best players such as Roy Dias's, Samaraweera's Attapattu's class have always been ignored. Reckless stroke-makers are preferred instead. (To be CNTD)

Posted by Sinhaya on (November 20, 2012, 16:18 GMT)

@Chris_P, I know you are an Aussie and I have seen your comments on cricinfo and I respect you a lot. Mate I wont draw much into this as our real test is next month in your shores. It will be tough but with the big fan base we have, we have all to play for. Adelaide would have been the best pitch for us cos it spins. I better lower my hopes as I feel the test result will be 2-0 in Australia's favor. I feel our batting is good enough to prevent a whitewash. Anyway, Aussies are the best fighters in the game no matter how they are weak. They have got the hunger to win. We underestimated the Aussies last year in our backyard and we paid dearly.

Posted by Sinhaya on (November 20, 2012, 16:06 GMT)

I really do feel for NZ. You guys are so nice and humble and I am sad to see you all lose. I wish if Williamson can put up a good performance in the 2nd test and hope it goes on till day 5.

Posted by Mahaanama on (November 20, 2012, 12:29 GMT)

This SL team has the best captain after Bradman (Mahela has the all time 2nd best test batting average as a captain ) , currently playing best batsman (Sanga has been the top ranked ICC No 1 batsman most number of times during last 5 years ), the best spinner ( Herath has been the most consistent spinner in recent years irrespective of match venue ), the best wicket keeper (Prasanna is the best keeper in terms of keeping). With the inclusion of Eranga and Welagedara now SL also have their right bowling combination. This SL team can choke any test team irrespective of the match venue.

Posted by Mahaanama on (November 20, 2012, 11:41 GMT)

@shortsillypoint : Pls don't put wrong facts in your comments. In that match where Crowe scored 299 NZ allout for 174 runs in the first inning and Aravinda De Silva scored 267 runs alone for SL's first inning. So Crowe had to score that 299 runs to save the match. In that tour ( SL's tour in NZ in 1990/91) all 3 test matches were drawn but SL had the upper hand.

Posted by Inzamam75 on (November 20, 2012, 6:18 GMT)

Sorry shortsillypoint, that game was a draw as New Zealand were on the backfoot after a superlative 267 from Aravind DeSilva.

Posted by Prem2248 on (November 20, 2012, 5:41 GMT)

and all other teams have gone there and played at least 4 practice matches, whereas SL was sent one week in advance , could play only 2 practice matches. If we have had a proper administration as they have in England and media the likes of India, the beating us would be only a dream for all other countries. Just before degrading us please verify the records that we're holding, (a) 4 times Semi-Finalists & (b) 3 times Finalists of the WCs, We are the holders of the highest Scores, in all 3 forms of the Game at the moment and it was only a SLan that has a scored double century in a T/20 match of a Minor -County tournament in England, who was never picked for any National side. We are doing all this without the best players produced by schools not being picked (and very little money spent on players), due to the ignorance of J&Ps of last 25 years. One may find 4-5 henchmen in every SLan National side. (Stats courtesy Cric Info).

Posted by Htc-Android on (November 20, 2012, 5:13 GMT)

NZ need to work on their batting. They have promising fast bowlers. But their batting letting them down. Watling and Ryder should get regular place in the team.

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