Number 11 Nuwan Pradeep survived five dramatic balls from Stuart Broad to help Sri Lanka avoid defeat after James Anderson ripped through the visitors to almost force an England win in the first test at Lord’s on Monday. Pradeep survived the final five balls, including successfully reviewing an lbw decision on the penultimate ball and edging the last just short of slip, to seal the draw as Sri Lanka finished on 201 for nine.
Anderson had got rid of Mahela Jayawardene (18), Kumar Sangakkara (61) and Lahiru Thirimanne (2) in the space of 14 balls either side of tea, before returning with the new ball to remove captain Angelo Mathews (18).
Earlier Cook had set Sri Lanka 390 to win in 90 overs after declaring England’s second innings on their overnight score of 267 for eight. The visitors had half an eye on an outrageous attempt to win the match after made steady progress in their second innings, losing opener Dimuth Karunaratne for 16 before lunch. Sangakkara and Kaushal Silva put on 98 for the second wicket before the latter fell for 57.
With 34 overs left in the Test, Sri Lanka were looking towards Sangakkara to provide a solid base, but Anderson had other ideas. After the wicket of Thirimanne reduced the visitors to 170 for five, captain Mathews and wicketkeeper Prasanna Jayawardene resisted for just over 20 overs before Prasanna went lbw to Jordan. Nuwan Kulasekara fell in similar fashion to Broad soon afterwards and when Mathews later edged to Cook in the slips to give Anderson his fourth wicket, the Lord’s crowd suddenly believed a famous victory was in sight. Broad dismissed Rangana Herath with the first ball of the final over but Pradeep survived the remarkable final five balls.
Brief Scores: Sri Lanka 453 & 201-9 (K Sangakkara 61, K Silva 57; J Anderson 4/25) vs England 575-9 declared & 267-8 declared.