The first test match played between Australia and Srilanka at Pallekele turned out to be a morale boosting win for hosts.
Srilanka did not have a good start to the game as they were bundled out for 117 in the first innings. Australia took a 86 run lead as they only managed 203 in their first innings with Adam Voges top scoring for the side with 47 runs. Srilanka made a remarkable comeback in the second inning as Kusal Mendis scored his maiden hundred to lead the revival. He ended up getting 176 runs off 254 balls and struck 21 fours in his innings after the side was in trouble at 45 for 3 after 13 overs in the second innings. He was supported by Dinesh Chandimal who made 42 runs and the lower order contributed in scoring over 100 runs to give Australia a target of 268 runs.
The Australian start in reply was not good one as opener David Warner was dismissed for a duck by left arm spinner Rangana Herath.Diluwan Perera got rid of Usman Khuwaja for 18 by trapping him leg before wicket to leave Australia placed in a spot of bother at 33 for 2.Joe Burns played well for his 28 runs but was undone by a delivery that turned sharply to see bowled off the bowling of left am chinaman Lakshan Sandakan. Srilanka premier bowler Rangana Herath came into the attack and took three important wickets to see Australia’s hopes of a winning the test fizzle out quickly as they were reeling at 140 for 6.Australian Captain Steven Smith played well for his 55 runs before he was trapped right in front of the stumps to see his side sliding to a probable defeat. Srilanka win was delayed by a partnership put on by Stephen O’Keefe and wicket-keeper Peter Nevill who put on a dogged resistance facing almost 30 overs and scoring mere four runs in that time to make the hosts work for their victory.
Angelo Matthews run out of ideas and turned to part time Dhananjaya de Silva who broke the stand after 30 overs as he dismissed Peter Nevill who managed to get an edge to be taken by Srilankan wicketkeeper Dinesh Chandimal with the hosts needing one more wicket to cap off an amazing win given their poor start to the test match. It was befitting in the end as Srilanka premier bowler Rangana Herath manage to clean bowled Stephen O’Keefe to give Sri Lanka a hard fought win. The next test match will be played at Galle on Thursday.