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New Zealand chasing 107 to win 1st test vs. Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka tail wags in 2nd innings 407; New Zealand set 107 to win first test

New Zealand chasing 107 to win 1st test vs. Sri Lanka

CHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand (AP) -- Shaminda Eranga and Suranga Lakmal put on 59 for the last wicket to lift Sri Lanka to 407 in its second innings Monday and set New Zealand a chase for 105 to win the first cricket test.

Sri Lanka started the day at 293-5, still trailing by 10 runs after being dismissed for 138 in its first innings and following on 303 run behind New Zealand's 441. Its second innings lasted 154 overs and ended 10 minutes after the scheduled lunch break on the fourth day.

Tim Southee quickly captured the wickets of overnight batsmen Tharindu Kaushal for 12 and captain Angelo Matthews for 66. But wicketkeeper Prasanna Jayawardene made 23 to slow New Zealand's winning progress before Eranga (45 not out) and Lakmal (16) staged a superb rearguard action.

Eranga hit seven fours in 62 balls to better his previous highest test score of 25 not out and Lakmal approached his test best of 18 before he was dismissed by Trent Boult to end a 38 minute partnership.

Southee and Boult shared eight wickets in the second innings and 13 in the match to play a major role in New Zealand's bid for a 1-0 lead in the two-test series.

Boult followed his 3-25 in the first innings with 4-100 in the second and Southee ended with 4-91 Monday after taking 2-17 in Sri Lanka's first turn at bat.

Southee was in good form at the start of the fourth day, having Kaushal caught at slip in the fourth over and Mathews -- who made half centuries in both innings -- caught by wicketkeeper B.J. Watling with the total 320-7. At that point, Sri Lanka led by only 17 runs.

The New Zealand attack lost some of its focus from that point and the last few wickets seemed hard to come by. Jayawardene stayed at the crease for 75 minutes for his 23 and was the ninth man out at 348, when Sri Lanka led by 45.

At that stage, New Zealand's run chase seemed likely to be the work of a few minutes. But Lakmal and Eranga went on the offensive and their productive partnership gave Sri Lanka the means to exert some pressure over the New Zealand batsman later in the day.

The pitch at Hagley Oval has become more docile as the match has progressed but the last wicket pair, who will share the new ball, gave the Sri Lanka bowlers small cause for hope.


Updated : 2021-05-10 03:59 GMT+08:00