Sri Lanka in Zimbabwe, 2 Test Series, 2020
Venue: Harare Sports Club, Harare
Date: 19 January-23 January, 2020
RR: 4.66 | Sri Lanka beat Zimbabwe by 10 wickets
That's it from this engrossing game where Sri Lanka bag a 10-wicket win to go 1-0 up in the two-match series. The second Test starts at the same venue on 27th January, 2020. It starts at 1000 local (0800 GMT). We will love your company for that game. Till then, goodbye and take care!
Dimuth Karunaratne, Sri Lanka skipper, says that they put in a huge total in the first innings and that advantage helped them. Credits the bowlers for bowling their hearts out in the tough conditions. Praises Mathews for his brilliant double ton and hopes that other batters around him can also convert their starts into a big total. Says that this was a tough game and now they are looking forward to the final Test.
ANGELO MATHEWS IS NAMED MAN OF THE MATCH FOR HIS MAIDEN DOUBLE TON. He starts by thanking the almighty. Tells that he has been working really hard with his trainer for the last couple of months. On his double ton, he says that it's been a while that he got into the three-figure mark in Tests. Adds that the wicket was very slow and credits the opposition bowlers for keeping things very tight. Says that they had planned that they did not want to bat in the fourth innings and had set the target of taking a lead of 150-odd runs.
Sean Williams, Zimbabwe skipper, says that the guys tried really hard but feels that they enjoyed the game. On their first innings total, Williams says that they would've loved to get to 450 in the first innings. Tells that today the ball was keeping low. Says that they can take a lot of positives from this game going into the final Test. Feels that the fast bowlers were superb for them but spinners need to step up for the side and do better. Finishes off by saying that it was all in all a very good game for them and he is proud of the boys.
On the final day, Suranga Lakmal started with a bang and picked up three early. However, when the hosts were amidst a stand, they kept coming hard at them and were rewarded with wickets. Lahiru Kumara used the second new ball well and picked up three wickets quickly. Embuldeniya ended with 2 wickets while Rajitha removed the vital wicket of the opposition skipper.
Zimbabwe had the tough ask of seeing off the final hour of the 4th day. However, their openers did really well to do that and enter Day 5 with all their wickets intact. However, they eventually fell in quick time in the morning session. Skipper Sean Williams and Brendan Taylor resisted for a while during their stand but once they fell, it was a matter of time before Sri Lanka rolled the innings over. Contributions from the likes of Sikandar Raza and Regis Chakabva meant that the hosts forced Sri Lanka to come out and bat in the final innings.
Zimbabwean bowlers toiled hard for nearly two days but failed to take wickets at regular intervals. They too were very tight and did not offer freebies to the visitors. Victor Nyauchi and Sikandar Raza ended up with a 3-fer while Sean Williams had two wickets to his name.
Like Zimbabwe, Sri Lankans were slow in scoring runs but they occupied the crease really well. Angelo Mathews brought up his maiden Test double ton and with contributions from Mendis, de Silva and Dickwella, the visitors managed to take a good lead of 157 runs.
With the ball, Sri Lankans were very tight and did not allow the hosts to score runs at a brisk pace. Embuldeniya was the star for them as he picked up a fifer while Lakmal and Kumara got 3 and 2 wickets respectively.
Earlier in the game, after winning the toss, Zimbabwe batted really well with contributions from their top order. All of their batters got starts with Masvaure, Kasuza and Ervine raking up their half tons. Donald Tiripano, in the end, made a handy contribution with the willow to take the total over 350.
There it is then! 14-run target has been breached by the visitors without any fuss and Sri Lanka have taken a 1-0 lead in the 2-match series. It is handshakes all around at the moment and one would feel that Zimbabwe did really well to take this game into the final hour but eventually Sri Lanka came on top to seal the deal.
Victor Nyauchi to bowl from the other end.