Sri Lanka draw run fest at Galle
Sri Lanka drew the high-scoring first Test against Bangladesh at Galle on Tuesday. Batsmen had it easy in the Test, scoring a massive 1613 runs while the bowlers could only take 19 wickets over 5 days.
On winning the toss, Sri Lanka’s new Test skipper Angelo Mathews chose to bat first. Tillakaratne Dilshan set the tone with 54 (63b, 9x4). The following batsmen cashed in, Kumar Sangakkara marking his return post injury with a 142, Lahiru Thirimanne smashing 155 and Dinesh Chandimal closing with 116* as the team posted a massive 570/4 before declaring midway through Day 2.
Everything was going Sri Lanka’s way in Bangladesh’s response with the visitors being reduced to 65/2. But then Mohammad Ashraful displayed an uncharacteristically restrained to his batting, adding a patient 70 with Mominul Haque to take his team to 135/2 at Stumps on Day 2.
Nuwan Kulasekara broke the 105 run partnership early on Day 3 and Rangana Herath in the over after that Bangladesh slid to 177/4, reaching lunch at 224/4. The next two sessions belonged to Ashraful and skipper-wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim. The duo batted through at a steady clip, adding 106 in the second session and 108 in the last session, taking Bangladesh to 438/4 at Stumps on Day 3.
Ashraful crossed his own score of 158 to post a new highest Test score for BD, he was unbeaten on 189 and Mushfiqur Rahim on 152 at Stumps. Ashraful threw away his chance to become Bangladesh’s first ever double centurion with a wild charge to Herath early on Day 4 only to be dismissed for 190. Rahim carried on, reaching his 200 and making Sri Lanka the first team to concede a 200 against batsmen of all opposition in the process. Nasir Hossain chipped in with 100 at no.7 too as Bangladesh posted their first 600+ Test total of 638, taking a 68 run lead over Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka began their second innings in the third session of Day 4, by Stumps they were on 116/1 with Tillakaratne Dilshan on 63* and Kumar Sangakkara on 49*.
The two carried on to reach their prospective hundreds on Day 5, Dilshan (126, 190b, 9x4) bringing up his 16th Test ton and Sangakkara his second of the match as Sri Lanka focussed on absolutely putting the lead out of BD’s reach.
Mathews and debutant Kithuruwan Vithanage pushed the score to 335/4 before the skipper declared in the second session of the day, tempting the visitors with a target of 268 in 35 possible overs.
Bangladesh batted out 22 overs, reaching 70 for the loss of one wicket before handshakes were offered and accepted, ending one of the heaviest scoring games of recent times.
The game featured 8 tons in all, putting it on level with the 2004 Antigua Test between West Indies and South Africa for the most individual hundreds in a game.