Second Test: Debutant Jayawickrama stars to put SL on top

Left-arm spinner Praveen Jayawickrama took six wickets on debut as Sri Lanka bowled out Bangladesh for 251 on day-three of the second Test.

The 22-year-old Jayawickrama’s six for 92 bettered Upul Chandana’s record of six for 179 in 1999 when he won his first cap against Pakistan in Dhaka.

Jayawickrama, a replacement for injured Lasith Embuldeniya, has had a modest record in first class cricket, but impressed at Pallekele, giving Sri Lanka a healthy 242-run first-innings lead.

“Just wanted to bowl a lot of dot balls and build pressure,” Jayawickrama told reporters. “That was the game plan. Glad it all worked today, but we have more work to do over the next two days,” he said, adding that Tamim Iqbal’s wicket was the one he really wanted.

The Bangladesh opener was dismissed by the Test rookie just eight runs short of a century.

Sri Lanka, who declared earlier in the day on 493 for seven, did not enforce the follow-on and were 17 for two at stumps with two days’ play remaining and a 259-run lead.

The tourists had got off to a solid start with the openers adding 98 runs for the first wicket.

Jayawickrama then claimed his maiden Test wicket when Saif Hassan was caught at gully for 25. Ramesh Mendis then accounted for Najmul Shanto for a duck in the next over.

A 52-run stand followed between Tamim who scored 92 and captain Mominul Haque. Tamim’s outside edge was grabbed by Lahiru Thirimanne in the slips off the bowling of Jayawickrama.

Mushfiqur Rahim and Mominul Haque were rebuilding the innings as Bangladesh reached 200 but in the last over before tea, Jayawickrama trapped Mushfiqur leg before wicket for 40.

In the final session, Bangladesh collapsed, losing six wickets for 37 runs.

Resuming from their overnight score of 469 for six, Sri Lanka declared after 3.3 overs having added 24 runs.

The declaration came 15 minutes into the morning session after Ramesh Mendis was dismissed to end a 111-run partnership with Niroshan Dickwella for the seventh wicket.

Taskin Ahmed picked up career best figures of four for 127.

Bangladesh coach Russell Domingo was hopeful of making a fightback in the next two days.

“We still have a second innings and we have to mentally prepare ourselves for it. It is going to be important for us,” he said. “There’s still a lot of cricket to be played here.”

Sri Lanka risk falling to their lowest world rankings position if they fail to beat Bangladesh in this second and final Test.

The first Test ended in a draw after a festival of runs with the two sides scoring 1,289 runs for the loss of just 17 wickets over the five days.



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