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Zimbabawe vs Sri Lanka, 1st Test: Suranga Lakmal sets up Lanka win

By Pti
Suranga Lakmal was the star for Sri Lanka with figures of 4 for 27

Harare, January 24: Suranga Lakmal took four for 27 to set up Sri Lanka for a 10-wicket win over Zimbabwe in the first Test in Harare on Thursday (January 23).

Resuming on 30 without loss and needing 157 to make Sri Lanka bat again, Zimbabwe recovered from the loss of three early wickets to Lakmal to reach lunch at 120 for three.

Brendan Taylor and Sean Williams had battled back, batting positively on a surface that remained largely benign in spite of the occasional ball keeping low.

At lunch they had taken Zimbabwe to 120 for three, still 37 short of making Sri Lanka chase in the fourth innings.

Zimbabwe captain Williams struck three fours in one over off Lasith Embuldeniya but was then was dropped off the left-arm spinner on 25 at short midwicket, going to reach 39 at the break.

Taylor hit five fours and clubbed Embuldeniya for six over square leg to reach 38.

It was a distant cry from the early stages of the session when Zimbabwe, playing their first Test since November 2018, appeared to be sliding to defeat as Lakmal plucked out the top three, all left-handers.

In his first over, the second of the day, with Zimbabwe resuming on 30 without loss, Lakmal found some extra bounce to find the edge of Prince Masvaure's bat which carried through to wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella.

In his next over Lakmal accounted for the other opener Brian Mudzinganyama, who had been drafted into the team as a concussion substitute for Kevin Kasuza who was hit a fierce blow on the head while fielding at short leg on Tuesday.

Playing in his first Test, Mudzinganyama made the mistake of not playing a shot to a ball that struck him on the back leg and was adjudged to be leg before.

Lakmal followed up with the prize wicket of Craig Ervine in his next over.

The 34-year-old, who made an assured 85 in the first innings, survived a confident lbw shout off his second ball and had made just seven when, in the next over, he flicked uppishly at a Lakmal inswinger, clipping the ball straight to Dimuth Karunaratne at short leg.

The tall pace bowler struck again immediately after, removing Taylor for 38, and Zimbabwe slumped to 170 all out.

Sri Lanka needed just 14 to win and the openers Oshada Fernando and Dimuth Karunaratne knocked off the runs in three overs.

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Story first published: Friday, January 24, 2020, 8:53 [IST]
Other articles published on Jan 24, 2020
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