Sri Lanka v West Indies, 1st Test, Galle, 2nd day November 16, 2010

Mathews' miracle cure, and Gayle gets a life

Plays of the day from the second day of the first Test between Sri Lanka and West Indies in Galle

Miraculous healing of the day
Perhaps Angelo Mathews had taken a sip of some magical recuperative elixir during the tea break, but the man who had not been allowed to bowl a single delivery during the tour of Australia, and the first five sessions of this match due to a thigh strain, was handed the ball to bowl the first over of the evening session. The magic potion can't have been that great, as the spell lasted just two overs, but I guess that there's nothing like the opposition being five-hundred -and-something for three for your captain to suddenly forget that you're injured.

Road-safety-equipment imitation of the day
Shivnarine Chanderpaul took his reputation for having a safe pair of hands to a whole new level as he sported a pair of high-visibility batting gloves during his stay at the crease. Given that the fluorescent glow from the bright orange gloves was almost enough to blind spectators hundreds of metres away; it was a little puzzling as to how Chanderpaul himself maintained his concentration amidst the shimmering amber glare. Still, no chance of him being run over by a milk truck mid-innings, or being clipped by one of those pesky road cyclists while taking guard. You can never be too safe.

The reprieve of the day
Because obviously, a guy who has scored 287 runs and completely demoralised the opposition attack in the process needs sympathy, umpire Richard Kettleborough decided to make absolutely sure that Chris Gayle was out when he was caught at short cover, by checking that Dammika Prasad had bowled a legitimate delivery. Sure enough, replays showed Prasad had overstepped, and Gayle was called back to continue rubbing the Sri Lanka bowlers into the dirt.

Chris Gayle impression of the day
When Prasad thought he had had Gayle caught, the fast bowler chose to celebrate a wicket in the same way that Gayle had celebrated his century yesterday: by sprawling himself out on the pitch. What on earth is happening to the players in this game? Is someone slipping sleeping tablets into the water? Are the beds not quite luxurious enough for them in their five star hotels?

Cinderella moment of the day
When Thilan Thushara misfielded an Andre Russell push at mid-off, the batsmen decided to scamper through for a single. Russell took off for the other end, but lost his shoe halfway down the pitch. No word yet on who will be playing the part of the handsome prince who will scour the lands in search of his one true love.

Andrew Fernando writes for The Pigeon and blogs here