Mendis magic helps Sri Lanka fight back

CEYLON TODAY | Published: 2:00 AM Dec 2 2021
Sports Mendis magic helps Sri Lanka fight back

Ramesh Mendis’ brilliant bowling figures of 6/70 helped Sri Lanka restrict West Indies to 253 before the hosts ended day three on 46/2, trailing by 3 runs.

West Indies started the day looking to further chalk off the Sri Lankan lead and continue the excellent display which they had come up with on day two. Skipper Kraigg Brathwaite and Nkrumah Bonner started brilliantly in their effort to accomplish this task. Batting sensibly, it looked like the pair would take the visitors past the lead. Brathwaite brought up his half-century while Bonner was starting to look more and more settled at the crease. 

But Ramesh Mendis, as he has done so often in this series, proved to be the man with the golden arm. Bowling from round the wicket, he got one delivery to fizz off the pitch to trap Bonner lbw, bringing an end to his knock of 35. 

The wicket would spring Brathwaite into action as he unleashed a few cracking shots against the spinners before Lasith Embuldeniya came up with a peach of a delivery to end his stay at the crease. Beaten by the flight and trajectory, Brathwaite was bowled after an excellent knock of 72 on his birthday. The wicket would then open the floodgates. 

Mendis then dismissed Roston Chase with the new ball doing the trick. The delivery was on the short side but Chase ended up clipping it straight to leg gully with Nissanka taking a sharp catch. Mendis would then trap Shai Hope on 22 as West Indies found themselves in all sorts of trouble. 

Another lbw would follow soon for the wily off-spinner; this time the wicket of Holder for 4. The next delivery would yield the scalp of Joshua da Silva on a duck as Mendis celebrated another five-wicket haul while being on a hat-trick. 

West Indies would manage to build up a small lead of 31 runs, but had a terrible session overall, as they threw away their advantage losing six wickets heading into tea. 

It didn’t take long for the Lankans to wrap things up in the final session with Mendis capping things off with the wicket of Jomel Warrican for 1, ending with exceptional figures of 6/70. 

Sri Lanka had to then negotiate through a tricky phase in the final session with the lights fading and the West Indies bowlers ready to make a serious dent. They had to endure a major setback, as they lost skipper Karunaratne to a brilliant piece of fielding from Kyle Mayers. He picked the ball brilliantly and shot a rocket of a direct hit as the Lankan captain was left languishing short of his crease. He would be gone for 6. 

Pathum Nissanka and Oshada Fernando looked relatively comfortable at the crease and it seemed that they would get Lanka through to the rest of the day without any further hiccups. But a calamitous miscommunication led to another run-out. Fernando dabbed the ball straight to backward point and embarked on a run but Nissanka sent him back. It was too late as he fell short of the crease by quite a big margin to walk back to the pavilion for 14. 

There would be no further damage for the hosts as they ended the day on 46/2, trailing by 3 runs with Nissanka and Charith Asalanka at the crease. 


Sri Lanka 1st Innings 204 (all out)

West Indies 1st Innings

Kraigg Brathwaite b Embuldeniye         72

J. Blackwood lbw b Jayawickrama        44

Nkrumar Bonner lbw b Mendis         35

Shai Hope lbw b Mendis         22

Roston Chase c Asalanka b Mendis         10

Kyle Mayers not out         36

Jason Holder lbw b Mendis         04

Joshua Da Silva b Mendis         00

Kemar Roach c de Silva b Jayawickrama     08

Veerasammy Permaul b Embuldeniye         15

J. Warrican c sub (C. Karunarathne) b Mendis    01

Extras: (nb 6)         06

Total: (all out in 104 overs)         253

Fall of wickets: 1-62 (Jermaine Blackwood, 27.4 ov), 2-137 (Nkrumah Bonner, 58.1 ov), 3-166 (Kraigg Brathwaite, 71.5 ov), 4-180 (Roston Chase, 80.5 ov), 5-191 (Shai Hope, 84.3 ov), 6-197 (Jason Holder, 86.5 ov), 7-197 (Joshua Da Silva, 86.6 ov), 8-208 (Kemar Roach, 89.2 ov), 9-246 (Veerasammy Permaul, 101.1 ov), 10-253 (Jomel Warrican, 104.2 ov)

Bowling: Suranga Lakmal 9-3-22-0, Lasith Embuldeniya 35-13-94-2, Ramesh Mendis 34.2 -8-70-6, Praveen Jayawickrama 25-4-59-2, Dhananjaya de Silva 1-0-8-0

Sri Lanka 2nd Innings

Dimuth Karunarathne run out (Mayers)         06

Pathum Nissanka not out         21

O. Fernando run out (Blackwood/Da Silva)     14

Charith Asalanka not out         04

Extras: (lb1)         01

Total: (For 2 wickets in 21 overs)         46

Fall of wickets: 1-7 (Dimuth Karunaratne, 1.5 ov), 2-39 (Oshada Fernando, 14.3 ov)

Bowling: Veerasammy Permaul 9-2-20-0, Roston Chase 5-1-8-0, Jomel Warrican 7-1-17-0

CEYLON TODAY | Published: 2:00 AM Dec 2 2021

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