Niroshan Dickwell, Dinesh Chandimal bury deep to help Sri Lanka draw introductory test

Niroshan Dickwell, Dinesh Chandimal bury deep to help Sri Lanka draw introductory test

Sri Lanka 397 (Mathews 199, Chandimal 66, Nayeem 6-105) and 260 for 6 (Dickwell 61 *, Karunaratne 52, Taijul 4-82) drew with Bangladesh 465 on December 9 (Tamim 133, Mushfiqur 105, Rajitha 4-60)

Dinesh Chandimal and Niroshan Dickwell dug deep, while the surface of Chattogram remained true to the nature of batting paradise, as the first Test between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka ended in a draw. But things could have been different if it weren’t for the stubborn 99 runs that held the seventh goal of the last day.

After Sri Lanka started the morning briskly, it lost two goals on each side of the lunch interval and stumbled to 161 to 6. At that stage, their lead was only 93. But Chandimal and Dickwell showed courage and determination and held on. Bangladeshi pitchers in check for 203 deliveries to reach a draw. Dickwell, more adventurous in missile production, began his 20th half-century of testing and ended up with an invincibility of 61 out of 96 balls. Chandimal, on the other hand, was more measured during his 135-ball 39 not out. Both teams shook hands as soon as the test entered the last hour, with Sri Lanka at 260 for 6, leading by 192.

The Bangladeshi pitchers, especially Taijul Islam and Shakib Al Hasan, followed their lines but failed to break the seventh goal. Taijul was a selection of pitchers, returning 4 for 82.

Sri Lanka continued on day 39 behind 2, still lagging behind 29, but only 24 balls in the first half were enough to erase this lead and Kusal Mendis attacked Bangladesh. He was the aggressor, while Dimuth Karunaratne focused mainly on the rotation of the blow.

Kusal started the day with Taijul rattling for two fours in the first over before hitting Khaled Ahmed and a hat-trick of the four on either side of the goal, when Sri Lanka recorded 59 shots in the first nine overs of the first round. Nor did it help that Bangladesh was a short pitcher and Shoriful Islam was expelled from the series after breaking his right arm, with the kind permission of bouncer Kasun Rajitha late the fourth day.

Shakib and Taijul then restored some parity, with the other striking twice. He first removed Kusala, a 43-ball 48, with a van that pounced on the middle stump before turning around and firing bail. Then he sent back Angelo Mathews for a duck with an amazing return catch. Mathews did not open an account, despite facing 14 balls, was visibly frustrated and tried to cross the pitcher over his head. But Taijul got both hands and finished the catch.

Over lunch, Sri Lanka led by 60. After the break, it collected 14 raids from the first two overs. Karunaratne reached its 28th century with a thick outer edge of Shakiba. However, his joy did not last long, because soon after he fell on Taijul. Karunaratne took an aggressive path and missed the track, but his ill-timed movement could only reach Mominul Haque in the middle goal, who finished the catch to his right.

Dhananjaya de Silva continued to play and to some extent succeeded, reaching 33 before pulling a long jump from Shakiba directly to Mushfiqur Rahim in the middle goal. Shakib could have scored another goal on the next ball, but Dickwell avoided the jumping Taijul on the back square leg.

Sri Lanka stared at the barrel at the moment, but Chandimal and Dickwell rushed inside to save visitors.

Mathews, who scored 199 in Sri Lanka’s first inning, was named the player of the match.


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