Sri Lanka vs New Zealand
SRI LANKA WIN BY 96 RUNS
Good fight from the Kwis, but regardless of all their frustrations today, Sri Lanka can now celebrate a Test series win. Thanks for sticking with us. Catch you again soon. Cheers.
Over 123.5 Muralitharan 0-0-0-0-W
397-10 - WICKET! And the ultimate nail in the Kiwi coffin has finally arrived. Vettori's slog sweep fetches the top edge and falls into the hands of the man running in from the midwicket fence. That took much longer than anticipated, but it's all over now.
Over 123 Herath 0-0-0-1-0-0
397-9 - Who would have thought the tea interval would even come into the equation today? Well, it has, and Vettori and Martin are that much closer to enjoy a cuppa before the inevitable takes place.
Over 122 Muralitharan 0-0-1-0-0-0
396-9 - No more of Thushara, again it's half-crocked Muralitharan. Plenty of fielders back on the fence when Vettori is on strike, but a lot of them come close in when Martin is on strike. But he's up to it, and blocks proceedings out.
Over 121 Herath 0-0-0-0-0-0
395-9 - By the way, this is now the highest Test fourth innings total ever in Sri Lanka. Martin does well to get a decent stride in but he'd do well to get a bigger one in. Regardless, he has seen off a maiden.
Over 120 Thushara 0-0-0-0-4-4
395-9 - Suddenly Vettori's strokeplay is all over the place, as three inside edges misses the stumps and fall short of the wicketkeeper's gloves. He eventually gets ahold of a hack across the line, swatting four through midwicket with that characteristic spin off the back foot of his. And another four, which takes Vettori to his highest Test score and first-class score - 138 not out - as square-leg fetches the powerful glance.
Over 119 Herath 0-0-0-W-0-0
387-9 - WICKET! And there it is, finally! O'Brien pokes forward, fetches a feather of an edge and walks before Harper gets to raise his finger. Actually, I wonder if Harper would have raised his finger. Perhaps O'Brien should not have walked...? Martin is the last man in - and I said this an hour ago, I know - but the end is nigh. Five-for for Herath.
Over 118 Thushara 1-0-0-0-1-0
387-8 - For one it's not a single for Vettori and the rest of the over to O'Brien, as the duo share the load for this over at least. Thushara james in a couple of yorkers, but those too can't snipe the desperate breakthrough.
Over 117 Herath 1-0-0-0-0-0
385-8 - "He just looks like a door," television commentator Ian Bishop exclaims, as O'Brien lobs forward, sticks out is bat, and blocks out another over. Perhaps O'Brien should put in for a promotion above Patel in the order next time around...
Over 116 Thushara 1-0-0-0-0-0
384-8 - Prasad is yanked out of the attack as his fellow fast bowler gets another chance to turn his arm over. Thushara persists with a nagging line outside the off-stump but O'Brien is in no way tempted to have a poke at it. Thushara needs to make the number 10 play more. He does so to end the over, but the tail-ender's defence is too 'good'.
Over 115 Herath 4-2-0-0-1-0
383-8 - Four smashed through midwicket and two sliced through extra cover sees Vettori's front-foot play step to the fore, after which O'Brien is left to do what he does best: drop anchor and enjoy his newfound hope as wannabe all-rounder.
Over 114 Prasad 2-0-1-0-0-0
376-8 - Well, whatever Sangakkara was hoping for from his pace ace certainly is not coming to fruition. O'Brien and Vettori remain resolute to say the least, and although this is still leaning toward farfetched: New Zealand might just begin to think of the win if they get through another high-scoring hour.
Over 113 Hearth 0-0-0-0-0-0
373-8 - O'Brien pads up and short-leg catches the ball. All and sundry go up for the lbw shout - and the catch appeal - either will do - but neither are given. Sri Lanka running out of options here...
Over 112 Prasad 1-0-0-0-1-4
373-8 - Prasad peppers O'Brien with more short balls and then does the same to Vettori, who does really well to go on the pull, roll his wrists over the shot and rocket the ball to the midwicket fence. And get this, the ball has stopped right in a puddle of water. More frustration for Sri Lanka.
Over 111 Herath 1-0-0-0-0-0
367-8 - For the record, this is the longest period O'Brien has ever been at the crease in Test cricket - all of 46 deleveries' worth. Ouch, Sri Lanka. He's padding up left, right and centre and Vettori must be well proud. Dirnks break.
Over 110 Prasad 1-0-3-1-0-0
366-8 - It's about time. Prasad, who put in a really good spell earlier today, returns to the attack and tests the tail-ender with some of the shorter stuff. O'Brien is up to this task too, and merrily bobs and weaves his way through the probing over.
Over 109 Herath 0-0-0-1-0-0
361-8 - Why oh why has Sangakkara not turned to his pace aces? This constant approach of spin from both ends is getting very tired, very quickly. Especially given crocked Muralitharan is operating at half his capacity.
Over 108 Muralitharan 0-0-4-0-1-0
360-8 - Thushara gets his fiedling on the long-on fence horribly wrong and lets through a boundary that really should only have been two. O'Brien is left to prod forward, rightly surviving a shout for lbw that was utterly hopeful to say the least - pitched outside off-stump and would not have gone onto hit.
Over 107 Herath 4-0-0-1-0-0
355-8 - Congrats, mate. Vettori goes over the top for four and becomes New Zealand's first centurion of the series. It's the fourth of his career and his second away from home; his first against Sri Lanka. His third at number eight and his second as Kiwi captain. The obligatory list is endless, actually.
Over 106 Muralitharan 4-1-0-0-0-0
350-8 - Stubborn is as stubborn does, with Vettori hammering four across the line through midwicket and then turning the strike over to his sidekick, who hauls out the straight bat stuff to thwart a gaggle of close-in fielders.
Over 105 Herath 2-1-0-0-0-0
345-8 - Paranavitana - stationed at silly mid-off - manages to fool the on-field umpires well enough and gets them to make a bump call decision via the third umpire. That forward defence from O'Brien clearly scuffed the ground before it settled in the fielder's hands and the man upstairs agrees. Theatrics for nothing, really.
Over 104 Muralitharan 1-0-0-0-0-0
342-8 - More of the same from the stubborn Black Caps, as O'Brien blocks out Muralitharan's threat. Would it not be wise to bring Thushara or Prasad back into the attack? Meanwhile, Vettori has entered the 'nervous' 90s.
Over 103 Herath 2-1-0-0-0-0
341-8 - Desperate times call for desperate measures as Sri Lanka go up for a couple of appeals that are blatantly, obviously not out. O'Brien may not look pretty in his approach, but he certainly knows how to avoid getting the edge to the slips.
Over 102 Muralitharan 0-4-1-3-1-0
338-8 - Vettori is offered a rank freebie and smacks it to midwicket for four, then pushing a single and allowing O'Brien half of the over to face. The tail-ender shows that he knows what he is doing - with the bat - prodding a tidy late cut to third man for three.
Over 101 Herath 1-0-0-0-0-0
329-8 - Herath tries his luck for a shout for lbw, but O'Brien has been struck on the pad well outside the line of the leg-stump. Indeed, it pitched in line and shaped away but that's a good decision from the umpire. Further frustration for the Sri Lankans.
Over 100 Muralitharan 0-4-0-1-0-4
328-8 - Yes, good going this from the Kiwi skipper, who goes on the slog-sweep and fetches four through midwicket. A single pushed down the ground leaves him at the non-striker's end, as O'Brien gets in on the act with a fat slap through square-leg for four too.
Over 99 Herath 1-0-0-0-0-0
319-8 - As many as four close-in fielders gather around as O'Brien tries a booming drive, to no avail. If anything, the number 10 will provide some comic relief before number 11 Martin brings the house down. For now though, O'Brien is all about survival and rightly so. Vettori deserves a century...
Over 98 Muralitharan 1-0-0-0-W-0
318-8 - Well what do you know! Muralitharan is going to bowl as half-crocked as he is. WICKET! His re-introduction to the attack works an absolutely charm as Patel struggles to pick a string of deliveries, eventually perishing to bat-pad as short-leg holds onto a comfortable catch. The end is nigh for the Kiwis as veritable batting rabbit - O'Brien - strides out to the middle.
Over 97 Herath 0-1-3-1-0-0
317-7 - Patel pulls off a nifty swat through mid-on, even if it was a tad uppish. Muralitharan is forced to chase hard to stop the four and this really isn't helping his injury. Why is he even on the field? Sangakkara surely does not intend on calling him into the attack given the nature of his injury?
Over 96 Dilshan 0-0-0-2-1-1
312-7 - Sangakkara persists with his part-time spinner, hoping for a false stroke from one of the stubborn Kiwis. It doesn't arrive, but they almost manage to orchestrate a run-out down the ground but the man in at mid-on is a tad sluggish with his return throw.
Over 95 Herath 0-0-2-0-1-0
308-7 - Two slips, a silly mid-off and a short-leg are left to twiddle their tumbs as Patel sweeps and drives confidently for two and one respectively. No fifth wicket for Herath yet, who is having to make do with an increasingly frustrating spell.
Over 94 Dilshan 1-1-1-0-0-0
305-7 - Dilshan operating with a slip and short-leg in place. One wonders how long Vettori intends on farming the strike his way. He can show a bit of faith in Patel, who managed a half-ton in a warm-up clash prior to the Test series.
The umpires have deemed conditions are good enough for play so we are good to go after a 35-minute delay. 59 overs remaining in the day...
No inspection as of yet. All and sundry are still ridding the ground of the sodden conditions (or at least trying).
The rain has stopped and the umpires will inspect conditions in about 15 minutes. Before that though, there's a brisk mop-up on the go by the SSC groundstaff.
We have had a heavy downpour over the luncheon break and the covers on. Could Vettori, Patel and Mum Nature yet smite the Sri Lankans? Time will tell...
While most of the session belonged to New Zealand thanks to Oram and Vettori's resistance and Sri Lanka's poor fielding, the hosts will be delighted at Dilshan's breakthrough at the stroke of lunch. There is, however, the possibility of somebody sticking it out with Vettori. This is Test cricket and stranger things have happened. Join us in about 35 minutes to see how it all unfolds.
Over 93 Herath 0-0-0-1-0-1
302-6 Vettori and Patel safely negotiate the final over before lunch.
Over 92 Thushara 1-0-0-2-1-W
300-7 More of the same, really, the two men pick off the runs and look pretty focused. WICKET! A lapse in concentration sees Oram succumb though and Vettori sinks to his knees, shaking his head and looking disappointed. But the part-timer has done it. Oram stood tall and slapped it straight to the man at cover. What was he thinking? Sri Lanka are jubilant, right at the stroke of lunch they get a wicket. Patel is the new man out and we'll have one more over before lunch.
Over 91 Herath 0-1-1-0-0-0
292-6 Two singles from the over and we're about five minutes away from lunch. Obviously there is still a mountain left to climb but New Zealand are looking way more positive than what they did yesterday.
Over 90 Thushara 1-0-1-0-0-0
294-6 Thushara continues - so spin and pace into the equation but it doesn't bother New Zealand. A single for each batsman and we're just 11 minutes away from lunch.
Over 89 Herath 0-1-1-0-0-0
292-6 This is way too routine and way too easy for Sri Lanka. Catches win matches and the ones that have gone down thanks to Sri Lanka's slack attitude will be bugging them right now. Vettori and Oram are still looking confident and focused, if they survive until lunch - it's going to be an entertaining second session.
Over 88 Thushara 1-1-1
290-6 The paceman is summoned to complete the over for the crocket Murali and the Kiwis are happy to pick up the singles.
Over 88 Muralitharan 0-0-0-
280-6 Murali only gets through half of his over before he has to stop. It appears he has an issue with either his groin or his knee. He limps off the field and this is really, really bad news for Sri Lanka.
Over 87 Prasad 0-2-0-0-4-1
287-6 Another chance goes begging. Vettori slaps one past square leg who fires a throw towards the stumps but Herath fumbles and Oram, who should have been out by a mile, is safe. Gosh. Getting darker out there now, a bit more overcast.
Over 86 Muralitharan 0-1-0-0-0-2
280-6 Murali with the new ball, this is a very weird trend. He gets one to move off the seam and rap Oram on the pads but the umpire says no.
Over 85 Prasad 2-1-0-2-0-0
277-6 Vettori and Oram have shown incredibly mental strength - we're heading towards lunch and they have fought, with a little bit of luck on their side, to survive and still chipped away at the score. The new ball has now been taken and Murali will bowl with it.
Over 84 Muralitharan 0-0-4-0-0-0
272-6 This little cameo by the men in the middle is reminding me of England in the Ashes recently, their top-order was revolting and the lower order batsmen did they dirty work and stuck it out to save them.
Over 83 Prasad 1-0-0-0-1-0
268-6 The new ball has not yet been taken. The good news for New Zealand is that the groundstaff are looking pretty alert on the fence, it's a bit more overcast now than what it was earlier so maybe it's time to bring Thushara back?
Over 82 Muralitharan 1-0-0-0-0-0
266-6 Murali returns to the attack but he poses no threat and Vettori takes a single before Oram defends the remainder of the over and we're set for a drinks break.
Over 81 Prasad 1-0-1-0-0-0
264-6 Frustration continues as Vettori and Oram continue to stand firm. Little movement and a lot of frustration for the hosts.
Over 80 Kapugedera 0-0-0-1-1-0
262-6 Just two singles from the over and the new ball is now available.
Over 79 Prasad 0-4lb-1-0-0-4
260-6 Luck is on New Zealand's side this morning - four leg byes comes off Oram's pads before he gets a single, a lucky one at that, a thick edge just misses the stumps. Vettori takes four off the final ball - he got sucked into the drive and a thick edge flies through the gap at second slip and gully. Prasad is looking very frustrated.
Over 78 Kapugedera 4-0-1-2-0-0
251-6 Signs up frustration becoming very evident now as Sanga makes another very random change in bowling. Nothing changes, though, the two men in the middle look comfortable and settled and the lead of 243 continues to be chipped away at. Is it possible that we'll see an epic comeback here?
Over 77 Prasad 0-1-4-0-1-lb
232-6 A single starts off the over before Sri Lanka fluff yet another catch! It moves away from Vettori and he goes chasing after it again - Paranavitana and Mahela dunno what to as it bisects them and Prasad is left really frustrated. A leg before appeal follows later in the over but it's going down leg.
Over 76 Thushara 0-0-1-4-0-0
237-6 A single towards square leg and a four past the slips. Very surprised that Oram and Vettori have actually managed to hold on this long.
Over 75 Dilshan 0-1-0-0-0-0
232-6 Just a single towards deep mid-off as Oram and Vettori continue to defend and cling on for their lives.
Over 74 Thushara 4-0-0-0-0-0
231-6 Thushara pitches one outside off and the Kiwi skipper can't help himself - he goes after it but it ends up going over the head of the man at slip. He realized it was a poor shot straight away but, ah, the temptation. Sri Lanka need to do more of this.
Over 73 Dilshan 0-0-0-0-0-1
227-6 Dilshan into the attack and single comes off the over. The new ball will be available to the hosts in a few overs - wonder if they'll take it?
Over 72 Thushara 0-0-0-4-2-0
226-6 All too easy for New Zealand. It's very bright out there today so doubt there'll be much movement.
Over 71 Herath 1-0-0-0-1-0
220-6 The Kiwi batsmen see off another easy over to take us to drinks. Time for Sri Lanka to come up with a strategy.
Over 70 Thushara 0-0-0-1-0-0
218-6 Sri Lanka really haven't asked any questions this morning and they haven't threatened the men in the middle at all.
Over 69 Herath 0-0-0-0-0-0
217-6 A maiden from Herath. This must be really frustrating for Sri Lanka - it's very sunny out there now too. The hosts need a breakthrough and they have to bowl full to Vettori in order to get him to drive.
Over 67 Thushara 1-0-0-4-0-1
217-6 Change in bowling as Thushara is summoned into the attack. A couple towards mid-on and a four towards fine leg starts things off before Oram takes one towards mid-off.
Over 66 Muralitharan 1-0-0-4-0-0
209-6 Too easy for Vettori and Oram - they're both looking very relaxed and due to the lack of spin they are given too much room making it far too easy to pick up the runs. if they survive until lunch it'll be quite an interesting final two sessions.
Over 65 Herath 1-0-1-4-0-1
196-6 A couple of singles start off the over before Vettori slaps an over pitched delivery through the covers for four. Both batsmen are keeping their heads down and focusing on the ball.
Over 64 Muralitharan 0-0-0-0-0-0
196-6 Another maiden - the wicket doesn't seem to be turning much - perhaps Sanga is just clutching at straws by using his spinners so early on.
Over 63 Herath 1-0-1-0-0-0
196-6 Some more solid defending from the men in the middle. A couple of singles come from the over but it's nothing match-saving.
Over 62 Muralitharan 0-0-0-1-0-0
194-6 Just a single with a deflection towards midwicket from the over. These two batsmen aren't even looking a little trouble. Sri Lanka need to pounce and go for the jugular.
Over 61 Herath 0-0-0-0-1-0
193-6 Vettori solidly defends before nicking a single towards square leg off the penultimate delivery. The sun is coming out now and the clouds are burning away.
Over 60 Muralitharan 0-0-0-2-0
192-6 Oram tucks the ball away from his hips for a couple - he's looking fairly settled this morning but surely 302 is too much to ask for the Kiwis? The question is whether Sri Lanka can take the four wickets they need to complete a whitewash.
Over 59 Herarth 0-4-1-0-1-0
190-6 Vettori is taken by surprise as Herath beats him outside the off stump. The Kiwi skipper responds with a four towards third man. A few singles follow and a mammoth task awaits the two men in the middle.
Over 58 Muralitharan 0-0-0-0-0
184-6 Murali into the attack straight away and he starts us off with a maiden over which Oram defends comfortably.
And welcome to day five of the second Test between Sri Lanka and New Zealand. The hosts are on the edge of victory here, if the weather can stay awya. It's overcast and the covers are off but prospects for a timely start are looking good. We'll keep you updated.
- 26th - 30th Aug 2009
- D J Harper and N J Llong
new zealand BATTING CARD
|Guptill||c Jayawardene b Herath||28|
|Flynn||lbw b Herath||50|
|Taylor||c Jayawardene b Herath||27|
|Ryder||lbw b Herath||38|
|Oram||c Sangakkara b Dilshan||56|
|Vettori||c Herath b Muralitharan||140|
|Patel||c Kapugedera b Muralitharan||12|
|O'Brien||c Jayawardene b Herath||12|
|Total||All out, 123.5 Overs||397|