Lankan fielding puts Kiwis on top
Fleming cracks a career best unbeaten 274
Zealand captain Stephen Fleming celebrates his double century
during the second day of the first test between the Sri Lanka
and New Zealand at P.Sara Stadium yesterday. Pic by Ishara
scored a career-best 274 not out to put New Zealand in a commanding
position in the first test against Sri Lanka at P.Sara Stadium yesterday.
Exploiting some sloppy fielding, Fleming struck 28 fours and one
six to pass 200 for the first time in his test career to help his
side declare on 515 for seven.
Darryl Tuffey then had Marvan Atapattu for a duck to leave the home
side on four for one when bad light ended the second day a few minutes
early. Dropped twice, Fleming spent just over nine hours at the
crease in stifling conditions. It was the second-highest test score
by a New Zealander after Martin Crowe's 299.
The lanky left-hander, sometimes criticised for failing to convert
good starts into major totals, broke into a huge smile and was hugged
by team mate Scott Styris after reaching 200 with a boundary.
now averages more than 76 against Sri Lanka in tests, was well supported
by Styris, who hit two sixes and five fours in his 63 before being
caught by Chaminda Vaas off spinner Kumar Dharmasena to give the
home side a wicket just before the interval. The pair put on 157.
earlier removed Mathew Sinclair for 17, caught by Kumar Sangakkara,
after the batsman had been given a life when he was dropped by wicketkeeper
Romesh Kaluwitharana on 10. Styris was also dropped twice, on 16
and 57, while Fleming escaped on 121 and 140, with Mahela Jayawardene
spilling all four chances in the slips and at gully.
were (207 for 2 overnight) went to town slowly, but surely, to put
themselves in an unassailable position. Sri Lanka had to play six
overs before the close, but disaster befell in Tuffey's first over
fifth ball from the score board end - 'Mr. Concentration' Marvan
Atapattu fell for a duck leg before when the batsman played tentatively
forward to a ball that dug in. Chaminda Vaas came in as night watchman
to join Jayasuriya. But in Bond's 4th delivery gutsy wind followed
rain and play was abandoned for the day.
Today - the
third day Sri Lanka has a daunting task to score 315 runs to avert
the ignominy of being made to follow on. The Sri Lankans have to
take an object lesson anchored by Fleming to stay and play a long
innings as the Kiwis will give nothing away.
play got under way in sweltering heat with Fleming on 112 and Sinclair
on 4. The New Zealanders were let off the hook when two vital catches
went abegging. Fleming survived two chances - at 113 when Nissanka
failed to position himself to hold a catch at fine-leg against 'Work-Horse"
Vaas who was bowling with much fire from the scoreboard end. Eight
runs added to his total when Fleming again, miscued a Nissanka delivery
and ballooned the ball. Mahela running back from gully made a valient
bid to hold on, but failed and went sprawling on. It was pathetic
close-in fielding when the Lankan (spinners) failed to curl on a
flat grassless pitch.
'Man of Steel' profiting by these lapses took full control. Playing
a typical Geoff Boycott innings he had the skills to smother the
Lankan spinners. His motive stay there. Be there and the runs will
flow. At lunch they were 288 for 3, with Fleming on 153 in 331 balls
(with 15 fours) and Styris on 26. Styris survived a nick at 13 off
''leggie'' Lokkuarachchi when Mahela spilled the catch at slips.
In the next over hit the bowler for a six. It was a disappointing
day for the Lankans when their bowlers failed miserably and was
let down by poor catching too.
in his usual characteristic style went on to score his double century
off 382 balls-surpassing his earlier highest also against Sri Lanka
174 n.o., in 1997 at the R. Premadasa Stadium. He played 'Murali'
with confidence. Murali playing before his own club fans bowled
without much success. His spinning fingers had more roasties in
the end. It was only in the 58th over he got his first scalp when
he had tailender Robbie Hart for 9.
157 run stand for the fourth wicket between Fleming and Scot Styris
had the hapless Lankan fielders running for shelter. This was the
most attractive stand in the Kiwi innings. Styris batting with charm
and aggression made 63 (with 5 fours and sixes), in his 106 - ball
assault. He fell in the deep for a good catch taken by Vaas. The
tailenders went for quick runs before the declaration was made.
Sri Lanka's fielding was atrocious, with a total of eight
clear catches being floored in the innings. Mahela Jayawardene,
considered one of the safest pair of hands in the side, was
the chief offender, spilling three in the day and four in
the innings. He had a nightmare in the field.
a disastrous morning, when a total of four chances were missed,
he juggled a top-edged pull off Fleming to the floor, running
back from gully. Kaushal Lokuarachchi was later denied his
first Test wicket when a sharp catch failed to stick at first
then failed to get a hand to a thin edge off Styris, who was
then on just 14. By the afternoon, his confidence was shattered,
and another howler in the slips off Prabath Nissanka followed
a handful of fumbles Fleming - the chief beneficiary of Sri
Lanka's appalling catching, having been dropped on 10, 121
crush Old Zahirians
By M. Shamil Amit
Police ran circles round the hapless Old Zahirians when they crushed
them by a massive 88 points (nine goals and five tries) to nil in
the second match of the Caltex Rugby 'A' Division League Tournament
rugger match played at the Police grounds yesterday. At the breather
the winners led 43-0.
are one of the teams that are not featuring foreign players, which
have been allowed by the Sri Lanka Rugby Football Union showed that
they are capable of handling any situation. The opponents that they
confronted yesterday were definitely weaker but they never took
the game lightly and played it as another game.
scored at will planting as much as seven tries in the first half
through one each from prop forward Shantha Rohana, scrum half Anjula
Silva, number eight Nishantha Welagedera, centres Nilusha Fernando
and Champika Thushara and two from flanker T.D. Herath of which
four were goaled by fly half Harshana Wijeweera.
the second half the Old Zahirians made some sporadic moves and succeeded
in getting a penalty in the third minute but it was kicked astray
by skipper and fly half Tuan Mannan.That was the only opportunity
they got to score. From then onwards it was the Police again who
opened scoring through two tries from scrum half Pradeep Wilson
and one each from number eight Nishantha Welagedera, centre Ajith
Priyantha, flanker T.D. Herath, full back Dhanushka Pubudu and centre
Muthusanka Jayawardena of which three were converted by Harshana
Wijeweera and two by Dhanushka Pubudu. The game was controlled by