Sri Lanka vs India - 2nd Test, Day 3: India lose KL Rahul early but enjoy healthy lead
Continuing where they left, both Angelo Mathews and Lahiru Thirimanne played their shots with flair. Till lunch both the batsmen completed their respective half centuries. By the time stumps were withdrawn on the second day, Sri Lanka was three wickets down and 253 runs behind the Indian total of the first innings.
Hence, the main challenge for Sri Lanka on Day 3 was to prevent fall of wickets so that the lead could be reduced as much as possible.
Indian speedsters led by Ishant Sharma tested the Lankan batsmen with bouncers and out swings. Stuart Binny who was denied his first Test wicket earlier due to overstepping the line was seen shouldering the bowling load.
Binny was quickly replaced by the more aggressive Umesh Yadav. Captain Kohli kept on shuffling the spinner and fast bowlers alike, but it was not before the 80th over that Ishant Sharma picked Thirimanne off a faint nick caught by the keeper. Thirimanne was visibly disappointed with the verdict, but with DRS out of the question, there was little he could do. His well fought 62 came off 168 balls. Even Sri Lankan skipper Mathews was not happy with umpire’s decision.
Thirimanne was replaced by the last match hero Dinesh Chandimal. Indians must have prepared some game plans for getting Chandimal out quickly. Ishant didn’t waste much time in getting Chandimal (11) caught behind off a beautifully outward shaping ball. KL Rahul after initial fumble held on to the ball much to the delight of the bowler.
Now, with Chandimal back in pavillion the Indians were back in the game. Their only obstacle now was Mathews.
Binny tasted success when he picked the crucial wicket of Mathews. Mathews nicked an off-stump line ball which was neatly lapped up by Murali Vijay. This was the first international Test wicket for Binny. Now the only question remained that how quickly can India wrap up the Lankan team.
Rangana Herath walked out to join Mubarak at the crease but was dismissed quickly by Amit Mishra in the next over. Mishra struck again when he foxed Mubarak and dislodged his bails with the well-flighted ball which held its line.
The rest of the tail quickly buckled in as Sri Lanka was bundled at 306. Mishra picked a well deserved four-wicket haul.
Indian innings started on a bad note as KL Rahul was clean bowled by Dhammika Prasad with only three runs on the board. Ajinkya Rahane was sent in as the one-down batsman to join Murali Vijay. Both played cautiously as the day ended. With 157 run lead and nine wickets in hand at the day end, India should be looking to square off the series.