Kusal Mendis, Kusal Perera Help Sri Lanka Get Some Stability in 2nd Test against Aussies

August 04 15:39 2016

New Delhi, Thursday, August 4 – Confidence of players follows an up and down trend when contest against a team that is equally competent and talented. Action between Australia and England began a day ago at Galle International Stadium in Galle. Both teams want to win the second Test match. On one hand, Sri Lanka eye sealing series by logging a victory in succession, while on the other hand, Australia are keen to level it at any cost so that the third Test becomes the decisive one. The match began only a few hours ago. Sri Lankan side is captained by Angelo Mathews. Dimuth Karunaratne, Kaushal Silva, Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya de Silva, Kusal Perera, Dinesh Chandimal Dilruwan Perera, Rangana Herath, Lakshan Sandakan and Vishwa Fernando are selected in the team, while Nuwan Pradeep, Roshen Silva, Suranga Lakmal and Asitha Fernando sit on bench.

Australian side, which faced unexpected defeat in the opening Test by 106 runs at the hands of Sri Lanka, has Usman Khawaja, Steven Smith – the captain, Adam Voges, Joe Burns, David Warner, Mitchell Marsh, Peter Nevill, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Jon Holland. The players to sit on bench are Jackson Bird, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Moises Henriques and Shaun Marsh. Regardless of being a step ahead opposite to Sri Lanka, the Aussies failed to end the game emerging as a winner. Angelo Mathews-led side put best foot forward and upset the rivals to taste win, which was awaited from a long time.

Sri Lanka captain Mathews expected his team to present a good show after winning the toss today and electing to bat first. The second Test is a do or die situation for Australia. And they performed in a way that was expected from them. The visitors were confident of starting the second Test on a good note and successful in getting wickets during early hours of the play. On the very first delivery of Starc and the game, Dimuth Karunaratne was dismissed on a naught when Burns did not make any mistake to pouch the ball on time. Kaushal Silva also fell short of expectations and lost his wicket to Starc at a score of 5, which comprised a four as well. Kusal Perera and Kusal Mendis brought stability in Sri Lanka’s batting by weaving a partnership of 108 runs. At a time when Australia were looking forward for another wicket so that the opponents’ attack could be weakened, Lyon bowled a delivery that sent Perera back to the dressing room. It was unfortunate that he was just a single away to pocket another fifty. Five boundaries from him helped Sri Lanka carry on displaying the confident show. Kusal Mendis and Angelo Mathews are on the crease and hope for better grip as the game progresses further.

After 45 overs, Sri Lanka have totalled 186 runs for the loss of three wickets. Mendis is batting at a score of 86 runs in 134 balls, together with 10 fours and a couple of sixes and Mathews at 35 runs, inclusive of two 4s and three sixes. The young batsman is nearing to pocket a ton and it is interesting to notice whether he achieves it or not. Despite the fact that the visitors weren’t in poor form in the Test that took place lately at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Pallekele, they missed the chance to be successful in the end in view of the fact that wickets can’t be saved from falling, tail-ender batsmen performing worst. It is the perfect platform for the Aussies to forget bitter memories of previous Test and shine to pocket one crucial win. The ongoing series will become highly interesting if the tourists make the hosts feel pressure. As of now, biggest challenge in front of them is the building partnership between Mathews and Mendis. If it is broken soon, chances are here that they could stop Sri Lanka from putting a big total.

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