After India amassed 393 on day 2, Sri Lanka had a lot to accomplish. They had faced a similar situation in Galle when India put together 375 yet managed to emerge victorious in the end. They could not, however, hold on to their wickets in Colombo and by the end of day 2, Sri Lanka were at 140/3. Captain Angelo Mathews scored his sixth Test century and Sri Lanka made 306, eventually conceding a lead of 87 runs. At stumps, India had recovered from the early wicket of Lokesh Rahul and were sailing smooth at 70/1.
Angelo Mathews’ 6th Test Hundred
Sri Lanka resumed from 140/3 with skipper Angelo Mathews and Lahiru Thirimanne on the crease. The duo took the scoreboard past 200 with ease. Fortunately for India, Ishant Sharma was able to dismiss Thirimanne (62) with the help of wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha just as he was settling in and looking dangerous. Once the 4th wicket fell, the Sri Lankan batting graph did not see any significant partnerships. Mathews was the only batsman who kept the scoreboard moving. With the help of twelve boundaries, Angelo Mathews was able to complete his 6th Test century. He reached the three figure mark in style with the help of an excellent reverse sweep. His was the only innings that helped Sri Lanka draw closer to the total India had mustered.
Amit Mishra and Co. wrap Lankan innings up
When Angelo Mathews (102) was sent back to pavilion by Stuart Binny, his team was struggling at 284/6. Sri Lanka’s hopes were alive because of Jehan Mubarak, who had scored 49 in Galle and had put on a crucial partnership with Dinesh Chandimal. However Mubarak could not save his team in Colombo this morning and much to India’s delight, Amit Mishra was able to deceive him and ensured that the Lankan innings would fall short. In the end, Sri Lanka were bowled out at 306, trailing India by 87 runs. Amit Mishra took four wickets (4/43), and Ravichandran Ashwin (2/76) and Ishant Sharma (2/68) contributed well to Sri Lanka’s collapse. Umesh Yadav and Stuart Binny got one wicket each.
Rahul’s early departure
The Indian team had no reasons to be unhappy when they came to play their 2nd innings. They had 87 runs over their opponents, and their opener Lokesh Rahul (108) was high on positivity thanks to his ton in the 1st innings. The Indian squad has been struggling with their opening for quite some time now, and luck did not favour them yet again. Rahul was completely tricked by a Dhammika Prasad indipper, and Sri Lanka got their first and much needed breakthrough in the inaugural over, reducing India to 3/1. Ajinkya Rahane, who failed at no. 3 in the 1st innings, came to the crease again. He and opener Murali Vijay then began playing carefully and refused to give in to the pressure that the Sri Lankan bowlers were trying to build, to build a handy partnership.
What to expect from Day 4?
Day 4 will, most probably, see India further their innings and look to increase the pressure on the hosts. Angelo Mathews would like to see Sangakkara off with a triumph in Colombo. While the Sri Lankan crowd will be hoping to see their hero bat explosively one last time, India will not let the opponents take the upper hand. Skipper Virat Kohli would like to forget the Galle debacle and approach the remaining two days with confident and sensible cricket. Sri Lanka will try to extract as many wickets as possible, while India would like to pressurize the hosts with massive lead.
India 1st innings: 393 (Lokesh Rahul 108, Rohit Sharma 79, Rangana Herath 4/81, Angelo Mathews 2/24)
Sri Lanka 1st innings: 306 (Angelo Mathews 102, Lahiru Thirimanne 62, Amit Mishra 4/43, Ishant Sharma 2/68)
India 2nd innings: 70/1 (Murali Vijay 39*, Ajinkya Rahane 28*, Dhammika Prasad 1/12)