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A series remembered for Jayawickrama heroics

After a dominating performance by the spinners, Sri Lanka won their first series of 2021 with 209 run victory against Bangladesh in the second Test.

The victorious Sri Lanka team with the series trophy yesterday (3) 

Sri Lanka, yesterday (3) against Bangladesh in Pallekele, recorded their first Test series win after January 2020 which they recorded in Harare. Since last December, when Sri Lanka began international cricket after the outbreak of the pandemic, they played three series; one against South Africa (away and lost), England (at home and lost), and the West Indies (away and drawn).

Left-arm spin bowler from Kalutara Holy Cross College and St. Sebastian’s College, Moratuwa, Praveen Jayawickrama, 22, was the pick of the bowlers helping Sri Lanka to make a 209-run win.

* His figures of 11/178 made him the first Sri Lankan to claim a 10-wicket haul on debut

* He also became the first bowler to take a 10-wicket haul on debut since 2008 when Australia’s Jason Krejza made the feat last.

* He is also the first bowler since Narendra Hirwani in 1988 to pick up two five-wicket hauls in his debut match.

* Jayawickrama (11/178) also received the best match figures for a left-arm spinner on Test debut ever, surpassing Alfred Valentine of West Indies (11/204 in 1950), Bob Berry of England (9/116 in 1950), and Bobby Peel of England (8/119 in 1884).

Bangladesh face early blow

The Sri Lanka vs. Bangladesh series will be remembered for a long time due to the historic effort by the 22-year-old left-arm spinner from Kaluatara, Praveen Jayawickrama

The day began with Bangladesh resuming on 177/5, with Liton Das and Mehidy Hasan in the middle. Bangladesh’s hopes of a chase suffered an early blow when Jayawickrama trapped Liton lbw in his second over of the day.

With 254 runs required to win, Mehidy Hasan continued his efforts to chase down the target but didn’t receive adequate support from the other end.

Dhananjaya de Silva sent Taijul Islam packing for two after drawing an edge, finding Dickwella behind the stumps.

Ramesh Mendis too impressed

Ramesh Mendis, who had to live under the shadow of Jayawickrama in both innings of the Test, bowled exceptionally well for a one who played only in his second Test. He added to Bangladesh’s woes when he claimed the wicket of Taskin Ahmed.

Jayawickrama dealt the final blows, bagging the wickets of Mehidy Hasan and Abu Jayed in the same over, pushing his wicket tally to 11.

Sri Lanka won the series 1-0. The first match was a high-scoring draw.


Sri Lanka 1st innings 493/7 dec.

Bangladesh 1st innings 251

Sri Lanka 2nd innings 194/9 dec.

Bangladesh 2nd innings (o/n 177/5 in 48 ovs.)

Tamim Iqbal c Dickwella b Mendis 24

Saif Hassan c Lakmal b Jayawickrama 34

Najmul H. Shanto b Jayawickrama 26

Mominul Haque (Capt.) b Mendis 32

Mushfiqur Rahim c de Silva b Mendis 40

Liton Das (wk) lbw Jayawickrama 17

Mehidy Hasan c Nissanka b Jayawickrama 39

Taijul Islam c Dickwella b de Silva 2

Taskin Ahmed c Karunaratne b Mendis 7

Shoriful Islam not out 0

Abu Jayed lbw Jayawickrama 0

Extras (nb 1, b 3, lb 2) 6

Total (all out, 71 overs) 227

Fall of wickets: 1-31 (Iqbal, 7.1 ov), 2-73 (Hassan, 16.4 ov), 3-104 (Shanto, 22.5 ov), 4-134 (Haque, 31.6 ov), 5-171 (Rahim, 41.4 ov), 6-183 (Das, 50.2 ov), 7-206 (Islam, 61.2 ov), 8-227 (Ahmed, 69.4 ov), 9-227 (Hasan, 70.3 ov), 10-227 (Jayed, 70.6 ov)

Bowling: Suranga Lakmal 4-2-14-0, Ramesh Mendis 28-2-103-4, Praveen Jayawickrama 32-10-86-5, Dhananjaya de Silva 7-1-19-1 (1nb)

Result: Sri Lanka won by 209 runs

Series: Sri Lanka won two-match series 1-0

Test Match No.: 2,419

Player of the Match: PraveenJayawickrama

Player of the Series: Dimuth Karunaratne