ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday November 4, 2007
Vol. 42 - No 23

Jayasuriya flop brings the hiccups

Callistus Davy reporting from Brisbane

Andy Bichell of the Bulls celebrates scoring a century during day two of the match between the Queensland Bulls and Sri Lanka at the Allan Border Field in Brisbane, yesterday. - Getty Images

Opener Sanath Jayasuriya gave the Sri Lankan camp a massive jolt ahead of the first Test as he failed on a fast pitch for the second time in two days against the Queensland Bulls here in Brisbane yesterday.

Jayasuriya made the customary hurried snick to be picked up in the slips against a ball from paceman Ashley Noffke for just two runs and Sri Lanka ended the day at a shaky 62 for 4, still needing a further 23 runs to wipe out a deficit after Queensland were bowled out for 295.

Some of the Australian spectators left the field when Jayasuriya was dismissed.But Test preparations apart Sri Lanka blew up a possible chance of imposing a comeback in the match on the second day when Michael Vandort who batted solidly was brilliantly caught behind on the leg-side for 26.

With his dismissal, and after Marvan Atapattu had made 7, Sri Lanka lost the fourth wicket that of Thilan Samaraweera to leave the job of repairing the innings in the hands of skipper Mahela Jayewardene who was shaping well and middle order batsman Chamara Silva when the final day's play starts today.

Queensland's Andrew Bickel, a Test discard, almost single-handedly carried his team to an healthy first innings lead with a thundering century (125) that had no less than 11 fours and seven huge sixes, two of which soared out of the ground.

But Bickel may have to consider himself probably lucky after an appeal for a catch taken by wicket-keeper Prasanna Jayawardena was turned down with the batsman on 25.

The fielders stood stunned when Bickel did not move an inch while fast bowler Farvez Maharoof even walked right up to the batsman unable to come to grips. There was no confrontation between batsman and bowler but Bickel lived to entertain the crowd in two sessions of batting.

He fell aiming for a eighth six into the car park over square-leg only succeeding in mistiming a ball from Malinga Bandara for Chamara Silva to take a running catch.

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