Spin Magic From Embuldeniya, Mendis Guide Sri Lanka to Series win

CEYLON TODAY | Published: 2:20 AM Dec 4 2021

The Sri Lankan spinners claimed five wickets each to set up a big 164-run win over West Indies, taking the series 2-0.

West Indies batters had no answers to the brilliant spin bowling from Lasith Embuldeniya (5/35) and Ramesh Mendis (5/66), who wreaked havoc on the final day of the second Test in Galle.

Mendis took seven wickets in the first Test and followed that up with sensational match figures of 11/136 in this Test. He was adjudged Player of the Series, while Dhananjaya de Silva was named Player of the Match. 

Sri Lanka started the day on 328/8 with de Silva on 153* and Embuldeniya keeping him company on 25*. Embuldeniya hit a couple of boundaries before he was cleaned up for 39 by Jason Holder in the third over of the day.

That dismissal called for a declaration from the Sri Lanka skipper Dimuth Karunaratne, setting West Indies a target of 297. The de Sliva-Embuldeniya partnership of 124 is the highest for the ninth wicket by a Sri Lanka pair in Tests.

In their chase, West Indies got off to a shaky start, as Mendis struck early, dismissing Kraigg Brathwaite lbw for 6. Jermaine Blackwood was joined by Nkrumah Bonner, the No.3 batter, and together they steadied the proceedings.

Sri Lanka went with an all-spin attack in the morning session. On the stroke of lunch, West Indies lost Blackwood for 36. Embuldeniya induced an edge, caught at first slip by de Silva, when the West Indies opener tried to drive an outside-off delivery, and that ended the 50-run second-wicket association. The visitors went to lunch at 65/2, needing 232 more runs.

In the second session, Shai Hope shared a 27-run stand with Bonner, but his wicket sparked a collapse. Mendis had him caught for 16 and on the next ball, he struck again to send Roston Chase back for a golden duck. He finished the same over with another wicket, with Kyle Mayers becoming his fourth victim. The tossed up outside off deliveries did the job for the spinner, with the last two batters falling prey. 

Embuldeniya joined the party shortly after, snaring Jason Holder’s wicket, who fell for 3. In his next over, he removed West Indies last hope – set batter Bonner – for 44. The spinner spun his web, trapping the West Indies batter nicely with an inside edge that pegged back his off-stump.

Kemar Roach hit three boundaries, but it was too late with wickets falling at regular intervals. No other batter provided resistance as the rest of the line-up crumbled. 

In no time, the spin duo of Mendis and Embuldeniya wrapped up the West Indies innings, setting up a sensational win. 

With two wins in two games, Sri Lanka sit on top of the ICC World Test Championship table.

Sri Lanka 1st innings 204 all out

Sri Lanka 2nd innings

D. Karunaratne Run Out K. Mayers         06

P. Nissanka lbw R. Chase         66

O. Fernando Run Out J. Blackwood         14

C. Asalanka c N. Bonner b V. Permaul         19

D. de Silva Not Out         155

D. Chandimal c&b R. Chase         02

R. Mendis c K. Roach b K. Brathwaite         25

S. Lakmal lbw V. Permaul         07

A. Mathews c J. Blackwood b V. Permaul     01

L. Embuldeniya b J. Holder         39

Extras: (4b 4lb 2nb 0pen 1w)         11

Total: (121.4 overs) 9 wickets 345 decl

Fall of Wickets: 1-7 Karunaratne, 2-39 Fernando, 3-73 Asalanka, 4-151 Nissanka, 5-157 Chandimal, 6-208 Wanigamuni, 7-219 Lakmal, 8-221 Mathews, 9-345 Embuldeniya

Bowling: Veerasammy Permaul 40-4-106-3, Roston Chase 27-2-82-2, Jason Holder 9.4-1-26-1

West Indies 1st innings 253 all out

West Indies 2nd innings

K. Brathwaite lbw R. Mendis         06

J. Blackwood c D. de Silva b L. Embuldeniya     36

N. Bonner b L. Embuldeniya         44

S. Hope c S. Lakmal b R. Mendis         16

R. Chase c O. Fernando b R. Mendis         00

K. Mayers c D. de Silva b R. Mendis         00

J.Holder c D. de Silva b L. Embuldeniya         03

J. Da Silva Not Out         04

K.Roach lbw L. Embuldeniya         13

V. Permaul lbw R. Mendis         01

J. Warrican c D. de Silva b L. Embuldeniya     03

Extras: (4b 2lb 0nb 0pen 0w)         06

Total: (56.1 overs) 132 all out

Fall of Wickets: 1-15 Brathwaite, 2-65 Blackwood, 3-92 Hope, 4-92 Chase, 5-92 Mayers, 6-103 Holder, 7-108 Bonner, 8-128 Roach, 9-129 Permaul, 10-132 Warrican

Bowling: Lasith Embuldeniya 20.1-6-35-5, Ramesh Mendis 25-6-66-5

CEYLON TODAY | Published: 2:20 AM Dec 4 2021

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