Saturday, June 28, 2003


In what is sure to be remembered as "The Battle Of The Bowlers", Sri Lanka came back Saturday to trounce the West Indies batting line up.

At end of play on Friday, The Windies appeared unbeatable after dismissing Sri Lanka for a mere 208 at Sabina Park, Jamaica. The attack had been led by the previously unknown Fidel Edwards, who is reputedly the brother of Pedro Collins, also a Windies bowler. Edwards, a 21-year-old Barbadian had been fished out from nowhere for this deciding Test by Windies' Captain Brian Lara, as the second-change bowler. In only his second first-class match, he ablely justified his Captain's leap of faith with a fairytale performance, bowling with both pace and aggression and finished with 5 for 36. However, with 5 dropped catches and 30 extras all was not necessarily well with the Windies.

But that was Friday, and only the Windies can lose a match that's already in the bag. It's a gift. Sri Lankan Pace bowler Prabath Nissanka, in just his 4th test, Saturday matched Edwards' heroics and posted a career-best five for 64 sending the Windies packing for 191 on the second day of the second test. At tea Sri Lanka was 129 for 5 (Jayawardene 32) and 208 leading the West Indies by 146 runs.

The match remains on a razor's edge as bowler's dominance continued though the final session. Corey Colleymore claimed the vital wickets of Sanath Jayasuriya (13) and Kumar Sangakkara (12), the first innings top scorer. Then Marvan Atapattu (28) gave Jerome Taylor his first Test wicket, and all of a sudden the Sri Lankans were back in trouble at (80 for 3).

In this low scoring match, the tail enders may well prove to be the decisive factor.

FYI Edwards' peformance was, according to the pundits, the third-best WI performance on debut. Read More...

5 Ninjas, 1 Kitten and a Fifth of Vodka!