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Sri Lanka were off to a disastrous start to the Test series against Australia as the hosts were bundled out for a paltry 117-run total on the opening day of the first Test in Kandy. After electing to bat first, the Angelo Mathews-led unit offered very little resistance and failed to get their act right with the bat.
Credit to Australia as the visitors stuck to disciplined lines and made most of the morning freshness on offer. Josh Hazlewood (3/21) made early inroads with the new ball and Mitchell Starc, making a return after long injury lay-off, sustained pressure from the other end.
After the seamers show, it was spinners who did the clean-up job as Nathan Lyon picked three wickets in seven balls after Lunch to put hosts on the mat. It wasn’t an alarmingly turning surface but the visitors made most of the little turn on offer. Sri Lanka were guilty of some poor shot selections and a very shaky approach to their innings.
In reply, Australia too weren’t off to an ideal start as both David Warner and Joe Burns were dismissed cheaply. Arrival of Steve Smith however restored order as the skipper, along with Usman Khawaja, commenced the repair job before rain washed out remainder of the day, and forced early stumps! Australia remained on their Tea total of 66/2
The day, as it happened!
1650 hrs IST: Sri Lanka vs Australia, 1st Test: Early stumps as rain washes out remainder of Day 1. Australia, in reply to hosts’ 117, remain 66/2
1500 hrs IST: Match delayed by rain and Australia continue to enjoy their extended Tea session
1435 hrs IST: TEA! Australia go into tea at 66/2, trail Sri Lanka by 51 runs with Smith and Khawaja still at the crease
1430 hrs IST: The deficit left for Australia now is just 53 runs
1425 hrs IST: Perera brought in the attack and Mathews rotating his bowlers to break this partnership
1421 hrs IST: And what Australia batsmen are trying to dominate Sandakan and get him under pressure
1420 hrs IST: FOUR! Smith comes down the pitch and just places that full toss from Sandakan to mid wicket boundary
1418 hrs IST: FOUR! A boundary from Khawaja brings up fifty for Australia… Aus 51/2
1415 hrs IST: Australia are 70 runs behind and we have change of bowling, skipper in with the bowl
1413 hrs IST: End of the over and Australia are 47/2
1410 hrs IST: Smith and Khawaja need to stay at the crease and meanwhile we have debut man Sandakan with the bowl
1338 hrs IST: Skipper Steve Smith is the new man in. All of a sudden, it’s looking very interesting now. Sri Lanka, after a poor show with the bat, have their tails up with quick strikes
1337 hrs IST: WICKET! Herath goes through Burns defence, disturbs the timber. Australia 7/2. Burns played for the turn but the delivery just went on with the arm. Visitors off to poor start
1335 hrs IST: Herath continues and he operates with three men around the bat. Mathews on the attack from both ends
1334 hrs IST: Pradeep completes the testing over by beating Khawaja. Bowling full has worked for him so far. The seamer has been able to get that little movement back into the left-hander
1332 hrs IST: Usman Khawaja is the new man in the middle for the hosts. He joins opener Burns
1331 hrs IST: WICKET! Warner (0) inside-edges Pradeep back on to his stumps. Australia 3/1. The left-hander was slightly late to react, and when he failed to connect the drive
1329 hrs IST: Hosts introduce spin early! Herath to bowl the second over of the innings
1327 hrs IST: Australia openers Burns and Warner out in the middle. Sri Lanka start with Pradeep
1311 hrs IST: O’Keefe scalps Pradeep who edges one to Smith at first slip. Sri Lanka bundled out for just 117 on Day 1. Impressive bowling display by the visitors. Used the conditions well
1308 hrs IST: Sandakan with some fearless strokes as he moves to 19 off just 15 balls. Scoring some crucial runs for his side. Something which the batters failed to do
1302 hrs IST: Change in bowling as Smith gives O’Keefe the opportunity to improve his wickets tally
1301 hrs IST: WICKET! Starc yorker hits Herath’s boot in front of the stumps. Out LBW. Sri Lanka 100/9
1259 hrs IST: Starc with a sharp yorker. He claims it hit Herath’s shoe before the bat. Decides to review the decision. Umpire goes upstairs
1254 hrs IST: 100 up for Sri Lanka. Something to cheer about for the spectators who have seen the hosts struggle since the start of day’s play
1250 hrs IST: WICKET! Perera offers no shot, plays for turn but the Lyon delivery skids on. Sri Lanka 94/8
1246 hrs IST: Starc is back into the attack. Smith looking to clean up the tail and keep Sri Lanka to a paltry total
1242 hrs IST: WICKET! Lyon delivery, which keeps low, traps Perera in front. Out for a duck. Sri Lanka 87/7
1241 hrs IST: WICKET! Lyon strikes in first over after Lunch as De Silva is caught at short-leg for 24. SL 87/6
1240 hrs IST: The teams are out for the afternoon session. Expect some turn, and more turn in this period of play. As expected, Nathan Lyon to commence proceedings after the break
1200 hrs IST: Sri Lanka reduced to 84/5 at Lunch. (De Silva 24*, Hazlewood 3/21)
1154 hrs IST: Kusal Perera, the new man in, showing some intent in the last over before lunch. The left-hander creams Hazlewood for a couple of boundaries
1153 hrs IST: GONE! Hazlewood gets some late movement and Chandimal edges it behind to Nevill. The keeper takes it by moving slightly to his right and Sri Lanka are 68/5
1139 hrs IST: De Silva gets into a good position for the Hazlewood bouncer and pulls it away in controlled fashion for another boundary. It’s a breezy little start to the youngster’s Test career
1137 hrs IST: Chandimal and De Silva resist for Sri Lanka after the hosts got off to a woeful start in the morning session. Batting hasn’t been easy so far as the visitors continue to test with disciplined lines
1120 hrs IST: De Silva is looking to attack O’Keefe. Positive cricket by the debutant
1116 hrs IST: FIFTY up for Sri Lanka. It has been a struggle for the hosts so far. They are on the mat early in the Test and need a big stand to turn the tables
1114 hrs IST: De Silva is off the mark in Test cricket with a straight six off O’Keefe. Gets to the pitch of the ball and completes the stroke with a fluent follow-through
1107 hrs IST: Dhananjaya de Silva, on Test debut, is out to face the music, very early in the innings. Tough ask for the right-hander
1106 hrs IST: And, it WORKS! Turn, bounce and Smith collects Mathews’ edge at first slip. Sri Lanka 43/4
1104 hrs IST: Steve Smith continues to attack with O’Keefe as he keeps three men close to the bat
1103 hrs IST: Chandimal collects 10 from the Starc over. The seamer ends the over well – with a steep bouncer and follows it up with a word or two!
1051 hrs IST: Sri Lanka struggle against both seam and spin as O’Keefe gets good purchase, from the hard new ball and the fresh wicket. Testing times for Mathews and Chandimal as Australia continue to press for wickets
1042 hrs IST: Angelo Mathews is the new man in and the most experienced Sri Lanka pair of the skipper and Chandimal have work to do now
1041 hrs IST: WICKET! Silva hangs his bat to Hazlewood delivery, Voges takes a sharp catch in the slips. SL 18/3
1037 hrs IST: Early spin! O’Keefe into the attack. This is going to be the flavour of the series – spin, spin and more spin. Did we say spin?
1030 hrs IST: GONE! Josh Hazlewood now traps Kusal Mendis in front and Sri Lanka are 15/2. They consider reviewing but then change their mind. Mendis tried to play it on to the leg side but missed completely. Replay suggests it was hitting middle stump. No confusion about that early.
1026 hrs IST: FOUR! Mendis flicks it away and it goes slowly to Hazlewood at fine leg. Wait. It creeps underneath the big-man and over the advertising hoardings. Steve Smith with a rather dejected huff
1024 hrs IST: First boundary of the innings courtesy Kusal Mendis. Goes on to the back foot and cuts Mitchell Starc ever so fine to send the ball racing to the ropes.
1018 hrs IST: GONE! Mitchell Starc returns to cricket and has Karunaratne trapped leg-before. But review taken. Contact is on the knee roll, no bat and looks like it would hit middle or leg stump. Pitches in-line and yes it is hitting the leg stump. Decision stands. Sri Lanka are 6/1 with Karunaratne going back for 5.
1005 hrs IST: Karunaratne and Silva are in the middle then. Mitchell Starc goes for three runs in the first over. Josh Hazlewood from the other end to open proceedings.
0936 hrs IST: Sri Lanka XI: Karunartne, K Silva, K Mendis, Chandimal (wk), Mathews (c), Dhananjaya De Silva, K Perera, Herath, N Pradeep, Lakshan
0930 hrs IST: Sri Lanka win the toss and elect to bat first
0930 hrs IST: Australia had already confirmed a day prior that they’d go into the match with two spinners and their lineup thus looks like: David Warner, Joe Burns, Usman Khawaja, Steven Smith (capt), Adam Voges, Mitchell Marsh, Peter Nevill (wk), Steve O’Keefe, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood
Australian captain Steve Smith named spin twins Nathan Lyon and Steve O’Keefe in his line-up Monday for the series opener against Sri Lanka as the newly-crowned kings of Test cricket look to cement their supremacy.
Bowling great Muttiah Muralitharan has been attacked by Sri Lanka’s cricket board chief for helping to coach the visiting Australian team. The Sri Lankan is a bowling consultant to Australia, ahead of the first Test starting Tuesday in Pallekele.Thilanga Sumathipala said Muralitharan, who retired with a record 800 test wickets, had let down his fans by agreeing to help a country that he said had accused the bowler of cheating.