On the final day of the second and final Test, Sri Lanka’s top-order batting held firm to ensure a tie and a drawn series against the West Indies.
On the final day of the second and final Test against the West Indies at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in Antigua on Friday, Sri Lanka’s top-order batting held firm to ensure a draw and a drawn series. The tourists reached 193 for two after being set a challenging target of 377 and resuming at 29 without loss. The tourists were led by captain Dimuth Karunaratne’s topscore of 75 and Oshada Fernando’s unbeaten 66. Karunaratne’s 25th Test half-century took four hours to complete after scoring just 16 runs in three previous innings.
Before being trapped lbw by seam bowling all-rounder Kyle Mayers just before the end of the post-lunch session, he faced 176 deliveries and hit nine fours.
“I’m very happy with the way we played in this series, particularly the bowlers, especially Suranga (Lakmal),” Karunaratne said, praising the man of the series for his 11 wickets in the two games.
“However, we must strengthen our batting, especially in terms of forming partnerships. That’s something I’ll be concerned about in the future.”
Karunaratne and Lahiru Thirimanne put on 101 for the first wicket before Thirimanne was dismissed for 39 after edging a full delivery from fast bowler Alzarri Joseph to Rahkeem Cornwall at first slip.
Thirimanne scored 240 runs in the series, the most on either side and three runs ahead of the leading West Indian, captain and fellow opening batsman Kraigg Brathwaite.
“No one in our team ever gave up. Everyone put in a lot of effort during the process “Brathwaite reflected on the ten days of Test cricket, especially the final day of the series, when they struggled to find any potency on a calm surface.
“We’re on the right track, and if we maintain our discipline and determination, we’ll be a force to be reckoned with.”
With innings of 126 and 85, Brathwaite was an easy pick for Man of the Match.
While the home captain used every bowling choice available to him, Fernando, in partnership with former captain Dinesh Chandimal, ensured there would be no late stumble in the final session.
Fernando seemed prone to Mayers’ gentle swing bowling, despite his efforts in nearly three hours at the crease.
After being dismissed by the Barbadian in his previous two innings, he required the aid of television replay technology and a successful DRS appeal to get a leg-before decision against him reversed by Mayers.
Sri Lanka’s job was made simpler by Shannon Gabriel’s absence for the majority of the afternoon.
In his sixth over, West Indies’ fastest bowler left the field with what seemed to be a hamstring injury.