Fri, Nov 09, 2018 - Page 16 News List

Jennings shines as England declare

AFP, GALLE, Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka’s Kaushal Silva, left, catches the ball to dismiss England’s Jos Buttler on the third day of the opening Test with England in Galle, Sri Lanka, yesterday.

Photo: AFP

A Keaton Jennings century yesterday helped England put Sri Lanka on the ropes in the first Test, setting the hosts a daunting 462 to win at notoriously low-scoring Galle.

England declared at 322-6 on day three with Jennings 146 not out after a patient innings that saw him deal deftly with the home side’s tricky spin attack.

At the close of play, Sri Lanka were 15 without loss, with Dimuth Karunaratne on 7 and Kaushal Silva on 8 after hanging on for seven overs.

In the morning session, a somewhat shaky Rory Burns, brought in to fill the huge shoes of the retired Alastair Cook, was run out for 23.

Moeen Ali, out first ball in the first innings, fared little better, driving straight to Rangana Herath at mid-on off Dilruwan Perera for 3.

Herath, in his last game before retiring, then got England captain Joe Root out for the second time in the match, caught behind for 3.

However, Jennings played cautiously and looked comfortable against spin on a wearing pitch that promises Sri Lanka a Herculean task on day four of the Test.

Ben Stokes hit a brisk 62 off 93 balls that saw three sixes, including one back over Perera’s head and an almighty sweep high over midwicket off Dhananjaya de Silva to bring up the 300.

However, shortly before tea he became Perera’s second scalp, a demon of a ball pitching outside leg and angling back to take the Durham all-rounder’s off-stump.

Jos Buttler smashed a quick 35 before being caught off Herath, while Foakes belted out 37 before falling to spinner Akila Dananjaya.

England made 342 in the first innings thanks to a century from Ben Foakes, filling in as wicketkeeper for the injured Jonny Bairstow.

Sri Lanka were then bowled out for 203, leaving them 139 behind, falling to a spin attack led by Ali, who took 4-66.

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