Galle: At the end of first session on day 1 of the second Test match between Australia and Sri Lanka, the home side were 109/2. Kusal Mednis was unbeaten on 52 and Kusal Perera was standing firm at 47.
Australia’s Mitchell Starc took a a wicket of the first ball of the innings to dismiss the opener Karunaratne and then struck once again to remove the other opener Kaushal Silva to leave Sri Lanka were reeling at 9/2. Fast bowler Mitchell Starc became the first Australian since Glenn McGrath and the fourth overall to take a wicket with the first ball of a Test match.
At this crucial juncture Kusal Mendis and Kusal Perera joined hands to provide stability to the Lankan batting by adding a century stand for the third wicket. Mendis scored his second Test fifty and continued his good run of form in the series.
Earlier Sri Lankan skipper Angelo Mathews won the toss and elected to bat first against Australia in the second Test in Galle on Thursday.
Left-arm fast bowler Vishwa Fernando debuts for Sri Lanka in place of pace spearhead Nuwan Pradeep, who was ruled out with a hamstring injury.
Australia, who had already named their playing XI on the eve of the match, have handed left-arm spinner Jon Holland his international debut in place of the injured Steve O’Keefe.
— cricket.com.au (@CricketAus) August 4, 2016
Sri Lanka, who took a 1-0 lead in the three-match series in Pallekele, have a great chance of clinching the rubber against the number one Test team after 17 years.
Sri Lanka: Angelo Mathews (capt), Kaushal Silva, Dimuth Karunaratne, Kusal Mendis, Dinesh Chandimal, Dhananjaya de Silva, Kusal Perera, Dilruwan Perera, Rangana Herath, Lakshan Sandakan, Vishwa Fernando
Australia: Steven Smith (capt), David Warner, Joe Burns, Usman Khawaja, Adam Voges, Mitchell Marsh, Peter Nevill, Jon Holland, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood.
The story includes input from AFP.