Sri Lanka’s openers battled back into contention with a record double-century stand at Lord’s on day two of second Test.
|It wouldn’t be an English Test without a spot of rain [GALLO/GETTY]|
Overcast conditions at Lord’s could not halt the Sri Lankan charge on day three of the second Test on Sunday.
Captain Tillakaratne Dilshan fell seven runs short of a double century as Sri Lanka reached 372-3 at an early tea to close in on England’s first-innings of 486.
Dilshan took another bad blow to the thumb he damaged on Saturday and was out six balls later.
But the rain came down just 10 overs after lunch with Mahela Jayawardene on 40 and Thilan Samaraweera 1 not out.
The rain delay meant there were 51.3 overs still scheduled to be bowled before play was abandoned for the day.
Leading the charge
Dilshan batted for more than seven hours as Sri Lanka took their first innings total to 372 for three when rain fell midway through the afternoon session.
|Third day scorecard|
England 1st Innings: 486 all out
T Paranavitana c Strauss b Finn 65
England, who won the first Test in Cardiff by an innings and 14 runs, compiled 486 in their first innings.
Dilshan batted throughout the morning session after Sri Lanka had resumed at 231 for one with his score on 127.
He lost Kumar Sangakkara for 26 when his predecessor as the national skipper edged the fourth ball of Chris Tremlett’s opening over with the second new ball to Matt Prior behind the stumps.
Dilshan took full advantage of some erratic bowling from the England attack, cutting and driving Graeme Swann for successive fours to reach his 150.
He had passed his previous Test best of 168 and taken his score to 192 when he was struck on the right thumb by Tremlett, the second time in his innings that he had been rapped on the hand by the England fast bowler.
One run later Dilshan was bowled off stump by Steven Finn during the course of an excellent over in which he beat the new batsman Thilan Samaraweera outside the off stump.
Dilshan’s exit was a reward for a much-improved England bowling display following a struggling morning session for the hosts.
Mahela Jayawardene, another former captain who has scored centuries in both his previous two Lord’s Tests, had reached 40 when the rain came. Tea was taken half an hour early.