GALLE: Opening batsman Pathum Nissanka scored an unbeaten 61 to get Sri Lanka off to a good start against the West Indies after rain stopped play until after tea in the second Test at Galle on Monday as the hosts reached 113-1 at stumps.
Match officials extended play after the hosts won the toss but stopped half an hour early with bad light after just 34.4 overs.
Nissanka, who completed his third Test half-century, and captain Dimuth Karunaratne shared 106 runs for the first wicket.
Karunaratne, who scored 147 and 83 in the first Test, looked rusty in his 90-ball 42 before being caught and bowled by offspinner Roston Chase. Karunaratne hit six boundaries.
Nissanka looked more fluent as his runs came off 109 deliveries. He hit a six and four boundaries.
The West Indies exhausted two reviews, first challenging a decision after a leg-before shout against Nissanka off Jason Holder.
They then argued for a caught behind with Oshada Fernando yet to score, but that too was unsuccessful.
The pitch in Galle had spin and bounce on the first day but the three West Indies spinners failed to take full advantage. Chase finished the day with 1-33.
Sri Lanka made one change to the side that won the first Test by 187 runs, leaving out fast bowler Dushmantha Chameera and beefing up their batting with Charith Asalanka, marking the former under-19 captain’s Test debut.
The West Indies brought in fast bowler Kemar Roach and spinner Veerasammy Permaul, replacing Shannon Gabriel and Rahkeem Cornwall.
Permaul is playing his first Test in six years and will complement fellow left-arm spinner Jomel Warrican.
Roach, the eighth highest wicket-taker for the West Indies in Test match cricket, was a surprise omission in the first Test.
Play will get underway 15 minutes early over the next four days to catch up for lost time.
SRI LANKA (1st Innings):
P. Nissanka not out 61
D. Karunaratne c & b Chase 42
O. Fernando not out 2
EXTRAS (LB-7, NB-1) 8
TOTAL (for one wkt, 34.4 overs) 113
FALL OF WICKET: 1-106.
TO BAT: A. Mathews, D. de Silva,
C. Asalanka, D. Chandimal, R. Mendis,
P. Jayawickrama, L. Embuldeniya, S. Lakmal.
BOWLING (to-date): Roach 6-2-12-0, Holder 8-2-23-0, Mayers 2-0-13-0, Permaul 5-0-18-0 (nb 1), Warrican 6-3-7-0, Chase 7.4-0-33-1.
WEST INDIES: K. Brathwaite (captain),
S. Hope, N. Bonner, R. Chase, J. Blackwood, K. Mayers, J. da Silva , J. Holder, K. Roach,
V. Permaul, J. Warrican.
UMPIRES: Kumar Dharmasena and Ruchira Palliyaguruge (both Sri Lanka)
THIRD UMPIRE: Lyndon Hannibal (Sri Lanka).
MATCH REFEREE: Ranjan Madugalle (Sri Lanka).
Published in Dawn, November 30th, 2021