Indians 351 and 112 for 3 (Rahul 47*, Pujara 31*, Fernando 2-17) lead Sri Lanka Board President's XI 121 (Ishant 5-23) by 342 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
Ishant Sharma's searing opening spell defined day two of the tour match, as he tore through half the opposition inside 21 balls, after India had reached 351. Sixteen wickets fell in total during the day - most of these to the new ball, on a surface that remained helpful for seam bowling.
The Indians themselves were in trouble at 28 for 3 in the second innings, but were steadied by KL Rahul and Cheteshwar Pujara, who led the team to 112 for 3 by stumps. The visitors lead the Board President's XI by 342.
Ishant prospered bowling full and straight, finding sharp movement off the seam, as well as a little swing in the air. Though the Board XI's attack is comprised of inexperienced first-class cricketers, the top order is packed with Sri Lanka players. Three of Ishant's victims - Kaushal Silva, Lahiru Thirimanne and Upul Tharanga, had played in Sri Lanka's most recent Test in Pallekele. His two other scalps - Kusal Perera and Dhananjaya de Silva - also played in the recent T20 series against Pakistan, at the same venue.
Silva was dismissed off the first ball Ishant delivered. The bowler sent one at the stumps and jagged it in at the batsman to trap him in front. De Silva was gone by the end of that over, when he let another full Ishant delivery through his defences. Tharanga was also out lbw, and Thirimanne and Kusal fell off consecutive deliveries. Thirimanne was caught in the slips as he pushed at a ball just outside the line of the stumps. Kusal barely had time to register the delivery that clattered into his stumps, before he was headed back to the pavilion.
Thirimanne's failure may be particularly significant in the context of the series. His place in the Test XI had been under significant contention, following a string of low scores against Pakistan. He will now know he needs a second innings score to shore up his position.
Having reduced the opposition to 10 for 5 inside eight overs, the Indians eased off the throttle. Ishant was taken out of the attack to allow Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron a run at the lower order. They teased batsmen's edges by consistently delivering the ball that shaped away from left-handers. There was plenty of pace in that spell too. Of the few runs the Board XI could manage against the new ball, most came behind square.
Milinda Siriwardene survived for 47 deliveries, in which he hit 32 runs. The cut and the square drive were his most productive strokes, until he edged Aaron behind, having pushed the score beyond 50.
Niroshan Dickwella and Danushka Gunathilaka came together with the score on 51 for 7 to put on 63 together. The ball had aged enough to dull some of the movement, and the zip off the pitch, and both men chose to attack, even when Ishant returned to the bowling crease. It would eventually be the spin of R Ashwin that removed them. Gunathilaka gave up a top-edge as he attempted to launch Ashwin over the legside, and Dickwella was bowled. The board XI innings was wrapped up for 121 runs.
The new ball brought wickets again towards the end of the day, when left-armer Vishwa Fernando and Kasun Rajitha combined to claim the Indians' top three in quick succession. Rohit Sharma collected his second single-figure score of the match when he was lbw to Fernando for eight. Wriddhiman Saha received a somewhat more contentious lbw decision when the ball hit him somewhere near the top of his pad, third ball. Kohli fell for his second low score in the match as well, chipping Fernando straight to cover.
Pujara was again on hand to stem the quick loss of wickets, combining with Rahul put on a slow but risk-free 84 runs. Rahul was not out on 47 at day's end, and Pujara on 31.