Free Press Journal

Ishant takes four as Sri Lanka struggle at 175/8


Ishant Sharma

Colombo: Pacer Ishant Sharma claimed four crucial wickets to leave Sri Lanka struggling at 175/8 at tea in the first innings on Day 3 of the third cricket Test against India at the Sinhalese Sports Club (SSC) here on Sunday. Ishant had figures of 4/39 while Stuart Binny (2/24), Umesh Yadav (1/59) and Amit Mishra (1/19) also bowled superbly to wreck the opposition batting order. Tailenders Rangana Herath (47 not out) and Dhammika Prasad (6 not out) were at the crease when tea was called.

The Lankan batsmen looked in poor shape right from the start, losing wickets at regular intervals. The hosts lost their first six wickets for only 47 runs, thus putting their team on the back foot right at the start. But Kausal Perera (55) and Herath got together to put on a 80-run stand for the seventh wicket to take the Lankans past the 100-run mark.

With the dismissal of Perera, Herath took on the responsibility to keep the scoreboard ticking and take his team close to the 180-run mark. Earlier, resuming the third day’s play at 292/8, the Indians managed to add only 20 runs to their overnight score.

Opener Cheteshwar Pujara remained unbeaten on 145 as India were bowled out for 312 in 100.1 overs in their first innings. For the hosts, Dhammika Prasad (4/100) and Herath (3/84) were the pick of the bowlers.