Veteran batsman Angelo Mathews marked his 100th Test match appearance scoring 42 off 106 balls inclusive of 5 boundaries, but the day once again belonged to Dinesh Chandimal who continued his rich run vein with another top score of 80 off 137 balls powered by 9 boundaries and 2 sixes in the wake of his unbeaten 86,and 94 in the first test as Sri Lanka ended the opening day of the second Test on 315 for 6 against Pakistan at the Galle International Stadium on Saturday.
In a must win game in the World Test Championship where they jumped to sixth position in the table standings following the innings defeat inflicted on table leaders Australia, but downsized after the loss to Pakistan, the Lankans got off to a good start with openers Oshada Fernando and skipper Dimuth Karunaratne posting 92 off 123 deliveries having won the toss and elected to bat. But Pakistan struck two quick blows when Fernando fell for 50 caught by Rizwan off Mohammad Nawaz and 4 runs later Kusal Mendis was run out for 3 off the bowling of Agha Salman with the score 96.
It brought the 35-year old former captain Angelo Mathews who walked into a big ovation by the home crowd as the 6918-run strong right hander in the Test firmament with 13 centuries and 38 half tons from 177 innings, who has taken Sri Lanka to some telling y triumphs accentuated by his unbeaten ton up famous downing of England at Headingly, saw Sri Lanka past the 100 mark together with skipper Dimuth K arunaratne. After Karunaratne had departed for 40 off 90 caught by Naseem Shah off Yasir Shah, Mathews stood firm adding 75 for the fourth wicket with Dinesh Chandimal. Mathews’ plucky knock off 106 balls ended when he was held by Rizwan off Nauman Ali.
Mathews departed with the score 195 off 59.1 overs and it was 195 for 4. He struck 5 boundaries following the early fronting by Oshada Fernando whose 70-ball workmanlike knock was studded with 9 boundari es and 3 over the top to boot, Karunaratne’s 90-ball knock contained 3 boundaries. The fifth-wicket pair of Chandimal and Dhananjaya de Silva added 63 off 91 balls taking Sri Lanka past 250. Chandimal, who had passed the border lines to coming within 20 short of the three figure mark was again to be denied it as in the first test. If carrying his bat to 94 in the second essay of the previous test was agonizing, it was another milestone gone asunder.
After Chandimal’s wicket was claimed by Nawaz who had him held by Alam with the score 258, the advent of the hard hitting wicket-keeper batsman Niroshan Dickwella smash a run a ball unfinished 42 with 5 boundaries and a six. Dhananjaya de Silva was sixth out for 33 off 61 bowled by Naseem Shah. He hit 3 boundaries and a six. With Dickwella was schoolboy prodigy Dinuth Wellalage on 6 off 9 with a boundary.
CHIEF SCORES: Sri Lanka 316/6 (86 Overs) (Dinesh Chandimal 80, Oshada Fernando 50, Angelo Mathews 42, Niroshan Dickwella n.o. 42, Dimuth Karunaratne 40, Dhananjaya de Silva 33, Dinuth Wellalage n.o. 6, Mohammad Nawaz 2/71, Naseem Shah 1/34, Nauman Ali 1/64, Yasir Shah 1/67).