SL vs WI | 1st Test | Day- 4: Ramesh Mendis spins a web around Windies batters, gets Lanka on brink of victory

Abhishek Singh

Abhishek Singh

Author| Nov 24, 12:34 PM

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The Sri Lankan spinners look threateningly beautiful on the Glle wicket which was proving to be a graveyard for the West Indies top order. The ball which got the wicket of Jason, Holder which was also the last wicket to fall on day four of the first Test between the two sides, was a perfect example of a straighter one from an off-spinner. It straightened ever so slightly and clipped the off stump that Holder stood holding the pose in disbelief. It was indeed a beauty of a ball. 

However, to Holder’s wicket, five other Windies batter had fallen to spin, a series of dismissals that started on the team score of only three runs in the fourth innings, chasing a target of 348. The first to go was the Caribbean skipper Kraigg Brathwaite who was trapped in front by Mendis. Jermaine Blackwood, the next most experienced pure batter in the team fell next as he was caught by Angelo Mathews off Lasith Embulduniya. 

The second wicket fell on the fourth ball of the seventh over at the team score of 11, but what transpired in the next five overs threatened to get West Indies bowled out for probably the lowest total in Test history as they lost the next four wickets with just an addition of seven runs. Mendis was the wrecker in chief, claiming three out of the four wi kets. From 11-1, the Windies were 18-6 in a span of 30 balls.

However, after this storm, there was finally some resistance as Joshua da Silva and Nkrumah Bonner put up unbeaten 34 runs for the seventh wicket and saw the Windies through the fourth day. The day was called early due to bad light and Sri Lankan bowlers will get another go on day five of the Test. With only four wickets left,  it would be interesting to see how West Indies fare in their resistance. 

Earlier in the day, Sri Lanka bowlers rolled over the West Indian first innings with meagre addition of thor overnight total of 224-9. Batting in their second innings, skipper Dimuth Karunaratne and experienced Mathews guided the team to 190 in just 40 overs and gave their bowlers a real shot at getting 10 wickets in the remaining overs. Karunaratne scored 83 off 104 balls while Mathews made an unbeaten 69 off 84 balls.

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