Second Test Match


At Nagpur, December 27, 28, 30, 31. India won by an innings and 106 runs to record their first victory in Tests against Sri Lanka. The Sri Lankans, having chosen to bat first, were disconcerted to see the ball turning so soon on a pitch and were all out before tea on the first day. Ranatunga's brave, stroke-filled 59 from 77 deliveries provided their only relief as Yadav, with well-flighted off-spin, and Maninder Singh, slow left-arm, with good support from the close-in fieldsmen, exploited some nervous handling of spin bowling. Yadav's figures were his best in Tests.

India's consolidation of their position was held up by bad light on the first day and rain and a damp outfield on the second, when the Sri Lankans were quirky about resuming in such conditions. Amarnath, returning after injury in place of the injured Azharuddin, and Vengsarkar drove home India's advantage after the former had shared a century stand with Lamba, who opened instead of Gavaskar. Amarnath batted for six minutes under six hours and became, at 61, the fourth to score 4,000 runs for India. His hundred was his eleventh in Tests, Vengsarkar's was his thirteenth. Gavaskar, recovered from the fever that had indisposed him, made possible a declaration at lunch on the fourth day with a versatile 74 off 79 balls, revealing his adaptability in a situation requiring quick runs. From one over from Ranatunga he took 18 runs, including two successive sixes. For three hours in the afternoon, Maninder mesmerised the opposition to return career-best figures of seven for 51 and finish with ten wickets in a Test for the first time. Only the left-handed Ratnayeke, batting for 2 hours 50 minutes, and Mendis, striking out boldly, provided any resistance.

Man of the Match: Maninder Singh and D. B. Vengsarkar (shared).

Close of play: First day, India 0-0 (K. Srikkanth 0*, R. Lamba 0*); Second day, India 54-1 (R. Lamba 19*, M. Amarnath 26*): Third day, India 324-3 (D. B. Vengsarkar 115*, S. M. Gavaskar 10*).

© John Wisden & Co