Ervine's highest Test score frustrates Sri Lanka in one-off Test


Ervine's highest Test score frustrates Sri Lanka in one-off Test

Chandimal replaced Angelo Mathews as skipper after the all-rounder stepped down following a humiliating one-day worldwide series loss to Zimbabwe this week.

Graeme Cremer (r) presents SL with the biggest threat going into Day 5.

Herath, who registered his 30th Test five-wicket haul in the first innings, ran riot at the start of Zimabwe's second essay to get the wickets of Hamilton Masakadza, Tarisai Musakanda and Regis Chakabva. Sri Lanka were 77-0 at lunch with Tharanga on 53 and Dimuth Karunaratne on 23.

Cremer took the wickets of Kusal Mendis (11), Dinesh Chandimal (55) and Niroshan Dickwella (6) to finish the day with 3-100.

It was then that Raza put together 86 runs with Peter Moor (40) for the sixth wicket to turn the tables on Sri Lanka.

"We need to erase the deficit and put as many runs as possible in order to put pressure back on them", Rangana Herath said at the post match press conference. Karunaratne and Mendis built up a 50-run partnership which can be called a quick one compared to Test standards. That ended a flourishing innings from a man who entertained the sparsely crowd with some handsome shots around the ground. The duo added 84 runs for the fifth wicket before Herath returned back to trap Raza LBW. But he departed when he attempted to sweep off Sean Williams where the top edged flew down to legs-side of the keeper.

Sri Lanka's plight was also made more hard by the hamstring injury picked up by Asela Gunaratne, while fielding in the morning.

He was able to bat but visibly struggled and will not take to the field in the second innings.

Starting off the day on 252/6, Zimbabwe lost batsman Malcolm Waller early on as he was dismissed by Dilruwan Perera for 68 off 98 balls, which included eight boundaries. Tail-ender Tiripano's removal for 27 gave Rangana Herath figures of five for 116.

Zimbabwe were still in trouble on 195-6 in the one-off Test, but recovered to 344-8 at stumps after Ervine came to their rescue with a magnificent 151 not out - his highest score in cricket's longest format.



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