Colombo, Aug 22:
Gritty batting from skipper Angelo Mathews and Lahiru Thirimanne helped Sri Lanka post 224/4 at lunch on the third day of the second Test against India at the P Sara Oval here on Saturday.
Resuming on the overnight score of 140/3, Mathews (72) and Thirimanne (57) ensured that the hosts added 84 runs to their total without losing a wicket in the opening session of the day.
Sri Lanka are still 169 runs behind India’s first innings total of 393 with seven wickets in hand.
India started the session with fast bowler Ishant Sharma and all rounder Stuart Binny. Mathews went after the latter and his very first over of the day yielded two boundaries.
The Indian bowlers thereafter tried to syick to a tight line and length and were successful in inducing a few false strokes and edges.
But the visitors were not able to capitalise on those since some did not carry and others that did, flew past the close fielders.
Thirimanne took a liking to off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and whenever the tweaker erred in length, the left-hander crashed him to the ropes.
But rotating the strike wasn’t easy for the pair, as the visitors were quite sharp on the field.
Both batsmen got to their individual fifties without facing too many problems. Once the leather had lost its shine, it did not move and the duo easily kept out the deliveries that were hurled at them.
The last few overs before lunch leaked runs as the Indian bowlers tried hard to claim atleast one scalp in the first session. (IANS)