DINESH Chandimal cracked an unbeaten 206, his maiden double ton and highest Test score, as Sri Lanka put themselves 190 runs ahead of Australia in the first innings before debutant left arm spinner Prabath Jayasuriya ripped through Australia in the second, handing them a special series-equaling victory.
Jayasuriya ended the match with twelve after Australia lost 9 wickets in the final session, bringing the match to a hasty end. Australia’s reply had started solidly before Ramesh Mendis trapped David Warner LBW minutes before the Tea break, after which the innings unraveled swiftly.
Jayasuriya had Usman Khawaja caught at short leg, and then Steve Smith trapped LBW for a duck in the same over to kickstart the collapse. Travis Head was beaten all ends up by a ripping off break from Ramesh before Jayasuriya spun a web, striking thrice in the space of eleven balls.
Marnus Labuschagne missed a sweep against a full ball, Cameron Green was stumped overbalancing and Mitchell Starc edging to slip against one not turning too much. Maheesh Theekshana hastened the end thereafter with a double strike before Jayasuriya gave it the finishing touch by bowling Mitchell Swepson.
Sri Lanka’s spin squeeze in the second innings was enabled largely thanks to the healthy lead they had bagged in the first innings, with Chandimal driving the way ahead earlier in the day, to get them to their highest total against Australia.
The hosts had built on their overnight lead steadily through the morning on the fourth day where Chandimal also added 68 with Ramesh Mendis for the seventh wicket that frustrated Australia for a large part.
Both Chandimal and Mendis were proactive in their approach to counter Nathan Lyon’s offspin. While the former brought out a string of sweep shots, the latter also put the spinner off by dancing down the track and lofting him. As a result, Australia had little to no success through the first hour and Sri Lanka stretched their lead swiftly.
With no luck going their way, Australia only managed to get back into the game when the third new ball was taken. Ramesh was yorked by Mitchell Starc and trapped plumb in front. This came in the middle of a flurry of opportunities for Australia.
A couple of overs before, Mitchell Swepson had an LBW turned down, only for the replays to show three reds. With no review left, Australia were left ruing a missed chance when Starc nearly struck twice. After bagging Ramesh, he also had a caught behind appeal against Maheesh Theekshana upheld onfield but it was overturned on review.
While his spell was testing with the new ball, the wickets column read just 1 as Sri Lanka survived. Chandimal farmed the strike when possible and also brought up his 150 in the process even as Pat Cummins knocked over Theekshana late in the first session.
But Chandimal stitched together useful stands with the lower order, particularly with Kasun Rajitha for the last wicket where they added 49 with Rajitha’s contribution being 0. Chandimal brought up his double century going 4,6,6 against Mitchell Starc before Sri Lanka were bowled out for 554.
That total proved to be enough to hand Sri Lanka their first-ever innings victory over Australia.
Brief Scores: Australia 364 (Steve Smith 145*, Manus Labuschagne 104; Prabath Jayasuriya 6-118, Kasun Rajitha 2-70) and 151 (Marnus Labuschagne 32; Prabath Jayasuriya 6-59) lost to Sri Lanka 554 (Dinesh Chandimal 205*, Dimuth Karunaratne 86; Mitchell Starc 4-98, Mitchell Swepson 2-100) by an innings and 39 runs. (Cricbuzz.com)
AUSTRALIA 1st innings 364
Sri Lanka 1st innings o/n 431-6
Pathum Nissanka c Cameron Green b Mitchell Starc 6
Dimuth Karunaratne lbw Mitchell Swepson 86
Kusal Mendis lbw Nathan Lyon 85
Angelo Mathews c Marnus Labuschagne b Mitchell Starc 52
Dinesh Chandimal Not Out 206
Kamindu Mendis b Mitchell Swepson 61
Niroshan Dickwella c Pat Cummins b Nathan Lyon 5
Ramesh Mendis lbw Mitchell Starc 29
Maheesh Theekshana b Pat Cummins 10
Prabath Jayasuriya b Mitchell Starc 0
Kasun Rajitha lbw Mitchell Swepson 0
Extras 4b 6lb 1nb 0pen 3w 14
Total (181.0 overs) 554 all out
Fall of Wickets : 1-12 Nissanka, 2-164 Karunaratne, 3-186 Mendis, 4-269 Mathews, 5-402 Mendis, 6-409 Dickwella, 7-477 Wanigamuni, 8-498 Theekshana, 9-505 Jayasuriya, 10-554 Rajitha
Did Not Bat : Fernando
Bowling : Mitchell Starc 29 – 3 – 89 – 4, Pat Cummins 30 – 5 – 95 – 1 (1w 1nb),
Nathan Lyon 64 – 5 – 194 – 2, Cameron Green 6 – 0- 20 – 0 (1w),
Mitchell Swepson 38 – 2 – 103 – 3.
AUSTRALIA 2nd innings
David Warner lbw Ramesh Mendis 24
Usman Khawaja c Oshada Fernando b Prabath Jayasuriya 29
Marnus Labuschagne lbw Prabath Jayasuriya 32
Steven Smith lbw Prabath Jayasuriya 0
Travis Head b Ramesh Mendis 5
Cameron Green st Niroshan Dickwella b Prabath Jayasuriya 23
Alex Carey Not Out 16
Mitchell Starc c Kusal Mendis b Prabath Jayasuriya 0
Pat Cummins lbw Maheesh Theekshana 16
Nathan Lyon lbw Maheesh Theekshana 5
Mitchell Swepson b Prabath Jayasuriya 0
Extras 1b 0lb 0nb 0pen 0w 1
Total (41.0 overs) 151 all out
Fall of Wickets : 1-49 Warner, 2-59 Khawaja, 3-59 Smith, 4-74 Head, 5-112 Labuschagne, 6-117 Green, 7-117 Starc, 8-144 Cummins, 9-150 Lyon, 10-151 Swepson
Bowling : Kasun Rajitha 5 – 1 – 16 – 0, Maheesh Theekshana 5 – 0 – 28 – 2,
Ramesh Mendis 15 – 2 – 47 – 2, Prabath Jayasuriya 16 – 2 – 59 – 6.