Sri Lanka are on top in the first Test against the West Indies in Galle. The home team has taken full advantage of the spinning conditions and after scoring 386 in their first innings, have caught the Caribbeans in a web of spin. West Indies have avoided follow-on courtesy Jason Holder, Kyle Mayers and Rakheem Cornwall before rain played spoilsport midway into the second session.
17:07 PM IST: Stumps Day 3
Expectedly, play on the third day has been called off with rain coming back again. A result in this match is unlikely as there is a forecast of rain on the remaining two days well. West Indies will start Day 4 on 224/9 with Shannon Gabriel and Joshua Da Silva in the middle. Starting the day at 113/6, West Indies fought back brilliantly with overnight batsmen Jason Holder (36) and Kyle Mayers (45) taking on Sri Lankan bowlers. At times it looked like West Indies won't be able to avoid follow-on but Rakheem Cornwall ensured the Caribbeans go well past that mark comfortable. They scored more than 100 runs in the morning session and lost only a couple of wickets. Sri Lanka lead by 162 runs and are in a strong position.
15:06 PM IST: News
Good news from the middle. The rain has stopped and the umpires are having a chat with the groundsmen. The weather looks gloomy but the covers have started to come out. Looks like the play will start soon.
14:57 PM IST: Tea
Early Tea has been taken
14:02 PM IST: News update
The news from the ground is that the skies have turned gloomy and with the continuous drizzle. The entire ground has been covered and will take around 30 minutes to resume after the rain god stops.
13:14 PM IST: Rain stops play
Sudden rain has halted play at Galle. The groundsmen have covered the entire square with the covers. Although the sun is out, the delay is expected to be short. West Indies 224/9 (80), still trail by 162 runs.
13:05 PM IST: Cornwall back in hut
Rakheem Cornwall's valiant resistance in the middle comes to an end as West Indies lose their ninth. Cornwall departs for 39, caught by Ramesh Mendis off Suranga Lakmal. West Indies 224/9 (80)
12:07 PM IST: Lunch break
West Indies finish the morning session on Day 3 at 215/8 in 75 overs, still trail by 171 runs. Rakheem Cornwall (33*) and Joshua Da Silva (9*) are in the crease. Earlier, Sri Lankan bowlers dismissed both overnight batsmen Jason Holder (36) and Kyle Mayers (45). Praveen Jayawickrama and Dhananjaya de Silva got the wickets for the hosts.
11:35 PM IST: Windies avoid follow-on
A four from Rakheem Cornwall off Praveen Jayawickrama and West Indies avoid the follow-on. Rahkeem Cornwall (18*) and Joshua Da Silva (4*). West Indies 194/8 (69)
11:15 PM IST: Windies lose 8th
Jason Holder's resistance ends. The tall right-hander was caught brilliantly by Dushmantha Chameera for 36. Praveen Jayawickrama magic continues. Rahkeem Cornwall comes in the middle. West Indies 176/8 (61)
10:57 PM IST: Mayers departs
Kyle Mayers' gutsy innings of 45 runs from 62 balls comes to an end with a superb catch by Dimuth Karunaratne at short cover. Sri Lanka gets the first breakthrough of the morning. Dhananjaya de Silva gets the wicket. Joshua Da Silva joins Jason Holder in the middle. West Indies 164/7 (59)
10:13 PM IST: Good start by Windies
12 runs in the first three overs on Day 3. Kyle Mayers looked solid with a couple of boundaries in the morning while Jason Holder is giving him the ample support at the other end. West Indies 131/6 (45)
9:28 PM IST: Weather forecast
The weather forecast has predicted rain today. Pray it doesn't play spoilsport on the day.
9:07 PM IST: 74 to avoid follow-on
West Indies are still 74 runs away to avoid follow-on on and with Jason Holder and Kyle Mayers at the crease, the Carribeans can still hope for a fightback, maybe even more.
9:03 PM IST: Day 3
Good morning everyone once again. It's Day 3 of the first Test match between Sri Lanka and West Indies, and what an exciting two days of cricket it has been.
Day 3 Preview
The script unfolded as expected although Sri Lanka could have put on a better score on the board after making a solid start on Day 1 on Sunday. The home team started the day at 267 for three but lost their last seven wickets for 119 runs. West Indies off-spinner Roston Chase took 5 for 83, his fourth Test five-wicket haul, while left-arm spinner Jomel Warrican claimed 3 for 87.
Little did the West Indians know that the Sri Lankans would be paying back in the same coin as West Indies faltered chasing Lanka's 386, which now looks like a formidable score.
Sri Lanka spinners Ramesh Mendis (3/23) and Praveen Jayawickrama (2/25) shared five wickets to leave West Indies struggling. Jason Holder and Kyle Mayers (batting on 22) are good enough for a fightback. How the West Indians apply themselves will be crucial as the ball is expected to turn even more on Day 3.
West Indies have never won a Test match in Sri Lanka.