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Sangakkara hits tons in both innings

Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara yesterday rattled up his second century against Bangladesh in the drawn opening Test, which saw a record-equalling eight centuries.

Sangakkara cracked a solid 105 and opener Tillakaratne Dilshan an impressive 126 as Sri Lanka declared their second innings at 335-4 at tea to set Bangladesh an improbable 268-run victory target in the last session.


Run machine: Kumar Sangakkara plays a shot on Day Five of the first Test against Bangladesh at Galle yesterday. Pic/AFP

The tourists finished at 70-1 in their second innings on the fifth and final day in Galle.

The flat track at the Galle International Stadium produced eight centuries, equalling the record of most tons in a Test, set during the West Indies-South Africa match in Antigua in 2005.

First after 12 losses
The draw was also Bangladesh’s first against Sri Lanka after 12 successive Test defeats. “The draw is huge and it was also the first time we took the lead against Sri Lanka,” said Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim, who was named man of the match.

“It is really enjoyable. The team is playing very well together. We didn’t really bowl well first up, so we had a chat about how we need to show character and then our batsmen did really well.

“It’s a huge achievement. They (Sri Lanka) are a pretty strong side and we have to do really well in the second Test. It’s our main target.”

Sri Lanka added 219 to their overnight total of 116-1 for the loss of three wickets, with debutant Kithuruwan Vithanage (59) and skipper Angelo Mathews (38 not out) the other main scorers.

Sangakkara completed his 32nd century — surpassing the record for a Sri Lankan in Tests that he had held along with Mahela Jayawardene — with a single off off-spinner Mohammad Mahmudullah. He hit 10 fours in his 172-ball knock. The former captain, who scored a brilliant 142 in the first innings, also became the fifth Sri Lankan to make a century in each innings of a Test after Duleep Mendis, Asanka Gurusinha, Aravinda de Silva and Dilshan. “It was disappointing not to win the match. It was hard work for the bowlers, but the batsmen batted really well,” said skipper Mathews.

“The batters would have loved to bat for another two days on this pitch. We have a couple of days to freshen up and I look forward to the next game.

Bangladesh are a very good team and they have been doing quite well in the recent past. They know their game, so we are not amazed about what they did. We knew they can do that,” he said.

2.5 lakh taka incentive for Bangla players
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) had announced an incentive of 2.5 lakh taka if the team draws any Test match. This decision was taken in the last Board meeting held at the beginning of March this year. “Initially we used to give one lakh taka for a drawn Test, but in the last Board meeting we decided to increase that amount to 2.5 lakh taka,” BCB executive board member and media committee chairman, Jalal Younis told MiD DAY from Dhaka yesterday. 

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