Sri Lanka managed to survive after a momentary lapse or rush or blood to finish the second day’s play on sixty-six for one. But day three in Green Park in Kanpur may not be any easier for the visitors if the Indian bowlers come into their own.
After India were bowled out for 642, a total achieved on the back on another splendid innings from Rahul Dravid amongst others, Sri Lanka had to bat their way through the remaining part of the post tea session.
It began horrifically as Tillkeratne Dilshan was dismissed first ball of the Sri Lankan innings. Rather Dilshan got himself dismissed. Going for a ball that pitched well wide of the leg stump, Dilshan was perhaps attempting to guide it down the leg side for four handsome runs, but ended up looking sheepish after getting the top edge of the bat.
The catch though was safely netted by debutant Pragyan Ojha to give Zaheer Khan and India the first wicket. But India will still need to take nineteen more wickets in order to win memorably here. For that Ojha will remain the key, having been given the opportunity and besides his catching, a lot will be expected of him to aid the spin card along with Harbhajan Singh.
Although the Indian bowlers looked on target, Kumar Sangakkara, the Sri Lankan captain, and opener Tharanga Paranavitana managed to see out the second day’s play, batting on thirty runs each as Sri Lanka managed to get to sixty-six for one at the end of the day’s play, although Rangana Herath must not be forgotten for running through the tail and prevent India from imposing even greater pressure on the visitors.
But the day clearly belonged to the Indian batsmen, with Rahul Dravid leading the way as the top three batsmen scored big centuries, and only Tendulkar missed out a half century amongst the top six batsmen.
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Sangakkara Magnanimous For Tendulkar