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Chandimal, Dhananjaya hang in there; take SL to 119/4 at lunch

NEW DELHI: Starting the day at 31 for three, Sri Lanka faced an uphill task ahead on day five in order to save the third and the final Test at the Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi. And it was an ominous start for the visitors as they lost first innings centurion Angelo Mathews to Ravindra Jadeja in the sixth over of the day, when the left-armer tossed up a wide one and Mathews tentatively prodded at that, only managing an edge. Ajinkya Rahane took a sharp catch at slips. However, later on the replays showed that Jadeja had overstepped and on-filed umpire Joel Wilson had missed it.

Nevertheless, Jadeja overstepped once again as he bowled a peach of a delivery to SL skipper Dinesh Chandimal, which could have effectively ended the visitors’ resistance. Chandimal and overnight batsman Dhananjaya de Silva managed to hang around till lunch taking their team total to 119 for 4, still 291 runs adrift of the target of 410 set by India.

While Mathews was tentative to start off with, Dhananjaya at the other end, looked in fine nick and instead of stone-walling, took his chances. He often went down the track to the spinners and early on when the pacers operated, banging in the ball short, he got on top of the bounce and seldom looked troubled. Jadeja looked the most threatening bowler, but on a placid wicket, Chandimal and Dhananjaya did enjoy an easy passage of play.

31 overs were bowled in the session with SL losing just one wicket and scoring 88 runs with Dhanajaya taking nine boundaries en route to his third Test fifty. Chandimal also started off tentatively with Jadeja finding enough purchase from the track. However, Ashwin looked lacklustre and the lack of support for Jadeja meant that pressure was built from only one side.

And the turning point, or what could have been, came fout overs before lunch was taken when Jadeja ripped one on middle and off; Chandimal came forward trying to defend a straighter one, on cue the ball just about spun away missing Chandimal’s bat and hit the top of off stump. Umpire Wilson, who had failed to spot he earlier no-ball that yielded Mathews’ wicket went upstairs and the replays showed that Jadeja overstepped ever so slightly. That wicket could have been the final nail in the coffin for Sri Lanka, but the skipper survived to fight two more sessions.

Brief Scores : Sri Lanka 119/4 (Dhananjaya 72*; Jadeja 3/25) & 373 (Chandimal 164, Mathews 111; Ashwin 3/90) trail India 536/7 dec. (Kohli 243, Vijay 155; Sandakan 4/167 & 246/5 dec. (Dhawan 67, Rohit 50*; Dhananjaya 1/30) trail y 291 runs

Source : timesofindia

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Chandimal, Dhananjaya hang in there; take SL to 119/4 at lunch


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