India tighten grip on the Test against Sri Lanka

August 3rd, 2008 - 5:50 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Harbhajan Singh

Galle, Aug 3 (IANS) India further tightened noose on Sri Lanka by claiming another wicket in the afternoon session to reduce the hosts to 109 for four on the fourth day of the second cricket Test match at the Galle International Cricket Stadium here Sunday. Sri Lanka’s top order struggled at 37 for three before lunch as Indian attack continued to rattle the hosts and snapped the wicket of Michael Van Dort at tea.

Harbhajan Singh, who had claimed six wickets in the first innings, caught the left-hander deceiving him with the arm ball. Van Dort, who is under pressure to keep his place in the side for the final Test after a string of low scores, struggled against India’s seam bowlers throughout his innings.

Van Dort was dropped by Rahul Dravid at third slip even before he could open his account, and then was caught off a no ball by Dravid off Zaheer Khan when he was on six. He was eventually dismissed for ten runs after a miserable one and a half hours’ stay at the crease facing 60 balls.

After his dismissal, Thilan Samaraweera (52) and Tillekeratne Dilshan (34) added 72 runs for the fifth wicket. Samaraweera brought up his 15th Test fifty and Sri Lanka’s hundred by cutting Harbhajan for four.

However, in the very next over, he had an anxious moment after a caught behind appeal by Ishant Sharma was turned down. The Indians opted for their first referral, but that came negative and three balls later the bowler missed a caught and bowled opportunity.

The Sri Lankans are chasing a target of 307 and got off to a disastrous start when they were reduced to 10 for three as they lost Malinda Warnapura, Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene cheaply.

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