HARARE: Fast bowler Suranga Lakmal claimed four scalps to help dismiss Zimbabwe cheaply as Sri Lanka wrapped up a 10-wicket victory on the final day of the first Test at the Harare Sports Club on Thursday.
Resuming at 30-0, Zimbabwe were bowled out for 170 in their second innings, leaving Sri Lanka to knock off 14 runs for the win.
Lakmal took 4-27 in 20 overs as he ripped through the top order with Zimbabwe losing three quick wickets for the addition of just eight runs in the morning session.
He had Prince Masvaure (17) caught by wicket-keeper Niroshan Dickwella in his first over, while Brian Mudzinganyama (16) was dismissed lbw in his second.
First innings top-scorer Craig Ervine (7) was the victim in his third over, caught by captain Dimuth Karunaratne at short leg.
Following that setback, the hosts moved the score to 120 before Lakmal claimed the prized wicket of Brendan Taylor (38), who showed no movement of the feet as he picked out Kusal Mendis at mid-on.
Zimbabwe tried to bat time after that, but when Lahiru Kumara (3-32) ripped through their lower order with the second new ball, their fate was sealed.
Sri Lanka amassed 515-9 declared in their first innings, with Angelo Mathews unbeaten on 200.
Zimbabwe won the toss and elected to bat first, scoring 358.
“I wanted to go for a biggy,” said man-of-the-match Mathews after the game. “It was very slow going and they gave nothing away with their umbrella field. We didn’t want to bat in the fourth innings. There was some variable bounce and turn. We wanted a lead of 160 so I had to make sure we got there.”
Zimbabwe, who had four debutants in their team, began the day with high hopes of wiping out that lead and saving the first Test they have played since November 2018.
“The guys tried their hardest,” said Zimbabwe captain Williams. “There are going to be hurdles that we have to cross as a team.”
The second Test will start on Monday at the same venue.
ZIMBABWE (1st Innings) 358 (C.R. Ervine 85, K.T. Kasuza 63, P.S. Masvaure 55, D.T. Tiripano 44 not out, Sikandar Raza 41; L. Embuldeniya 5-114, R.A.S. Lakmal 3-53).
SRI LANKA (1st Innings) 515-9 declared (A.D. Mathews 200 not out, B.K.G. Mendis 80, D.M. de Silva 63, N. Dickwella 63; Sikandar Raza 3-62, V.M. Nyauchi 3-69).
ZIMBABWE (2nd Innings, overnight 30-0):
P.S. Masvaure c Dickwella b Lakmal 17
B.S. Mudzinganyama lbw b Lakmal 16
C.R. Ervine c Karunaratne b Lakmal 7
B.R.M. Taylor c Mendis b Lakmal 38
S.C. Williams c Dickwella b Rajitha 39
Sikandar Raza st Dickwella b Embuldeniya 17
R.W. Chakabva b Embuldeniya 26
D.T. Tiripano lbw b Kumara 6
K.M. Jarvis b Kumara 1
A. Ndlovu b Kumara 0
V.M. Nyauchi not out 0
EXTRAS (b-2, nb-1) 3
TOTAL (all out, 92 overs) 170
FALL OF WKTS: 1-33, 2-36, 3-41, 4-120, 5-120, 6-148, 7-159, 8-163, 9-165.
BOWLING: Lakmal 20-8-27-4 (1nb); Rajitha 14-6-23-1; de Silva 11-6-12-0; Kumara 21-8-32-3; Embuldeniya 26-8-74-2.
SRI LANKA (2nd Innings):
B.O.P. Fernando not out 4
F.D.M. Karunaratne not out 10
TOTAL (for no wkt, 3 overs) 14
BOWLING: Tiripano 2-0-8-0; Nyauchi 1-0-6-0.
RESULT: Sri Lanka won by 10 wickets to lead two-match series 1-0.
UMPIRES: M. Erasmus (South Africa) and N.N. Menon (India).
TV UMPIRE: L. Rusere (Zimbabwe).
MATCH REFEREE: J. Srinath (India).
MAN-OF-THE-MATCH: Angelo Mathews.
SECOND TEST: Harare, Jan 27-31.
Published in Dawn, January 24th, 2020