Sri Lanka hold on for thrilling draw

England

The first Test between England and Sri Lanka at Lord's ended in thrilling circumstances, as England needed two wickets off the final over to win, got one of them, thought they got the second before DRS intervened, and a draw was the result.

The first Test between England and Sri Lanka at Lord's ended in thrilling circumstances, as England needed two wickets off the final over to win, got one of them, thought they got the second before DRS intervened, and a draw was the result.

Sri Lanka needed 390 to win on the day but that was immaterial, as they needed to bat out the day. With the final session requiring seven wickets, it seemed easy enough, but James Anderson and Stuart Broad upset the apple cart.

With three overs to go, England needed three wickets. Then with two to go they needed two. And with Broad bowling the final over, he removed Rangana Herath first ball (if he'd reviewed it he would have been saved as his struck hand was not on the bat), making it five balls to get the one wicket.

Then they thought they had it, as the umpire gave Nuwan Pradeep out LBW with the second-last ball. England celebrated, but it was sent upstairs, where DRS showed a big inside edge. Pradeep, and thus the Test, was saved for Sri Lanka.

Earlier: England declared on 267 for eight overnight, having allowed Gary Ballance to get his ton overnight, and so Sri Lanka started the day afresh, and only lost the one wicket in the morning session, to Broad.

Dimuth Karunaratne was the man to fall, getting an inside edge onto his thigh pad, which rebounded to Sam Robson at short leg. This left Kaushal Silva (44) and Sangakkara (34) to see out the session.

The pair put on 74 runs together in the morning, going at nearly four to the over, and while the realistic chance of them getting the 390 required was still a minority, it wasn't beyond the realms of possibility.

Silva reached his half ton in the afternoon, but could only make 57 before departing. He gloved a leg side short ball to Prior, off Chris Jordan. He stood though, requiring England to review it, and hot spot showed the gloved edge.

This brought Mahela Jayawardene to the wicket to join Sangakkara, and they went on to bat for most of the afternoon. They put on 36 together over the next 13 overs, not trying to score the runs required but rather looking towards the close.

Jayawardene was unable to see out the session though, finding himself caught behind off James Anderson. The paceman got some nifty reverse swing and Mahela got a faint outside edge while playing away from his body.

At tea, Sangakkara was on 59 not out, adding to the ton he made in the first innings, while Lahiru Thirimanne had yet to get off the mark. They were still 226 runs behind, but that was immaterial.

The evening session saw seven wickets required. Anderson soon made it five as he got Sanga to chop onto his stumps for 61, and then in the same over removed Lahiru Thirimanne. This put the tail firmly in place.

Angelo Mathews was still to be counted on though, and the skipper went on to use up 90 valuable deliveries for his 18 runs. Prasanna Jayawardene, batting with a fractured finger, and Nuwan Kulasekara also departed, LBW to Jordan and Broad.

Thus, at the end, when Mathews was caught by Cook off Anderson, the door was truly ajar for England. When Herath was out caught behind, walking like some old-school martyr, it was heart in mouth stuff. But Pradeep resisted, to make sure the second Test at Headingley is the series decider.

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