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GUGOBET| Perfect Ten For Sri Lanka's Quicks on Rare Seam-Friendly Pitch in Bangladesh!

Sri Lanka's Quicks
Sri Lanka's Quicks

The Sylhet pitch is refreshingly different when it comes to Bangladesh, where fast bowlers have had a great time so far with the top layer of live grass on the surface, a rarity in the country. The true nature of the pitch also allows the batters to free their arms whenever a bowler strays in length.

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Sri Lanka's fast bowlers, therefore, kept things as tight as possible on their way to all ten of Bangladesh's wickets in their first innings of the first Test across Friday and Saturday. This was the first time Sri Lanka's quicks have achieved the feat since Johannesburg 2021.

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Missed A Trick

Vishwa Fernando, Lahiru Kumara and Kasun Rajitha showed exactly where the Bangladesh fast bowlers had missed a trick on the first day. They stuck to the off-stump and outside-off channel, and didn't try anything different or fancy for long periods.

Vishwa Took Four Wickets

Vishwa took four wickets, which included Zakir Hasan and Najmul Hossain Shanto, both lbw, on the first evening. Rajitha had Mominul Haque on the first day and broke nightwatcher Taijul Islam's resistance on the second, drawing the outside edge from both batters.

He also removed Mehidy Hasan Miraz with a good-length ball that the allrounder tried to pull, only to get a leading edge to point. Kumara, playing his first Test after 12 months, removed Mahmudul Hasan Joy and Shahadat Hossain with awaygoing deliveries. Litton Das fell inside-edging a Kumara delivery that nipped back in.

Coach Gamage Said

It left Sri Lanka's fast-bowling coach Dharshana Gamage rather pleased. "They bowled really well to get all ten wickets," he said. "There was a bit of help from the wicket as well. There is a good layer of grass and it was bouncing also. They stuck to their basics, sticking on top of off-stump all day. That's why they got success.

Main Format

"Our basic plan, what we spoke about the most, was discipline. It was because of our discipline that we were successful and ultimately able to get all ten wickets. We bowled in the right areas, bowled good spells. From both ends, we developed good bowling partnerships. That's what we really focused on achieving."

He said that the target with Vishwa has been to keep him mentally ready for Tests as it has been his main format.

Vishwa Works Hard

"I think Vishwa plays Tests more than any other format. Domestically, he plays well in white-ball cricket as well. But in terms of international Test cricket, the number of matches he gets to play isn't all that much. So we worked very hard to bring and keep him at this level," Gamage said.

"What we're always looking at is how to keep him physically and mentally prepared for Test cricket. Because we know there are a fair few gaps between Tests, so that's not something that is easy to deal with. Vishwa, however, works extremely hard to stay sharp and keep his rhythm."

As For Kumara

As for Kumara, Gamage said that he, too, had worked on developing his bowling endurance after his return from a long injury layoff. "He has had some injuries in the last few years. We have worked hard on workload in the last couple of months," Gamage said.

"We try to bowl few long spells in practice to get used to bowling in Test cricket. He is in good shape at the moment. He showed that he could bowl consistently in the right areas and cause a lot of problems."

Since Chris Silverwood's arrival as Sri Lanka head coach, the fast bowlers have shown discipline at bowling on and outside the off stump. They are without Asitha Fernando, but Kumara can stake a good enough claim to be in Sri Lanka's first-choice pace attack. Vishwa and Rajitha too have made themselves Test regulars. The Test isn't over, and the pace trio will likely have to put in another big shift to close it out.


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