Day 4 of 2nd Sandals Test Match
Venue: Sir Vivian Richards Stadium
Toss: Sri Lanka won toss and bowled
Scores: West Indies 354 and 280-4 dec.; Sri Lanka 258 and 29-0
West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite came very close to a second century in the second Sandals Test match on Thursday which helped his team to a commanding position against Sri Lanka after the fourth day. The experienced opener followed his 126 in the West Indies first innings with a patient 85 in the second innings which, along with half centuries to Kyle Mayers and Jason Holder, allowed him to declare the second innings at 280-4 – setting the visitors a target of 376 on a good pitch at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium. Holder was 71 not out, having shared a 53-run partnership with wicket-keeper Joshua Da Silva who was 20 not out.
West Indies then had 40 minutes to bowl at Sri Lanka before stumps and they reached 29-0 with captain Dimuth Karunaratne (11 not out) and Lahiru Thirimanne (17 not out) at the close. They will resume on Friday with another 347 for victory while West Indies will be hunting 10 wickets in 98 overs on what is expected to be an enthralling last day.
Sri Lanka started the day at 250-8 in its first innings and the home side took just over three overs to wrap up the innings at 258 and take a first innings lead of 96 runs. Pathum Nissanka, on 49 overnight, completed his half century from the fifth ball of the day, but was out soon after for 51 – caught by substitute Hayden Walsh Jr. at deep backward square from the bowling of Kemar Roach after the trap was set for the hook shot.
When West Indies batted a second time Mayers went on to a half century from 63 balls, with eight fours, before eventually falling lbw to seamer Saranga Lakmal for 55. Brathwaite reached his 21st half century from 137 balls and looked set to reach centuries in both innings when he went on to 85 which came off 196 balls and included four boundaries. Holder played a number of outstanding shots and paced the innings well with his half century requiring just 69 balls.
“We wanted to get a few overs in this evening when it’s a tough period for the openers to bat. The wickets didn’t materialize but I think the runs on the board are good It won’t be easy, the pitch is decent so we’ve go to work hard tomorrow. It would be great to win and go up the Test rankings but we’ve got to take it session by session,” Brathwaite said.