Cricket

Sri Lanka bank on stars

2014-06-20 14:41
Mahela Jayawardene (AFP)

Leeds - Sri Lanka were once again left relying on batting greats Kumar Sangakara and Mahela Jayawardene to rebuild their innings after England removed both openers on the first morning of the second Test at Headingley on Friday.

At lunch, Sri Lanka were 74 for two with Sangakkara, fresh from his century in the drawn first Test of this two-match series at Lord's, 16 not out and Jayawardene six not out.

With overcast conditions at Headingley traditionally aiding swing bowlers, it was no surprise that England captain Alastair Cook opted to field first after winning the toss under grey skies.

England, on a far more docile pitch, had come within one wicket of victory at Lord's on Monday and Cook clearly had high hopes of his unchanged attack.

Yet Sri Lanka somehow got through the first hour without losing a wicket despite James Anderson and Stuart Broad repeatedly beating the outside edge.

But Kaushal Silva fell for 13 when caught behind by Matt Prior off a full-length Anderson delivery.

England had a chance to run out Sangakarra for nought after he set off for a single that wasn't on and was sent back.

However, wicketkeeper Prior failed to gather Broad's shy at the stumps from mid-on.

Anderson, after a fine spell of one for 16 in 10 overs, was replaced by fast bowler Liam Plunkett.

On his Yorkshire home ground, Plunkett struck second ball when, from around the wicket, he knocked over left-hander Dimuth Karunaratne's leg-stump with a delivery that swung sharply.

Ian Bell nearly marked his 100th Test appearance with a spectacular catch when, at leg slip, he did well to get both hands to a full-blooded pull by Jayawardene off Plunkett only for the ball to burst through his grasp.

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