Over the final few days of the first test between England and Sri Lanka at Lord’s, many people would have predicted a draw, but anybody who watched the final afternoon on Monday would know that there was a whole lot more to this draw than first expected.
The cricket provided unbelievable scenes as the umpire gave Pradeep out lbw and therefore looked to hand England the victory on the penultimate ball. However, Sri Lanka used their review to save the last wicket and scrape towards a draw after their dramatic collapse.
Sri Lanka were chasing 390 for victory, and were 164-3 at tea, and leave the match almost certainly heading for a stalemate. But up stepped England’s bowlers, led by James Anderson, to take 6 wickets for 37 runs in the final session, and setting up a dramatic final over. Anderson finished with impressive figures of 4-25 off 19 overs, with Stuart Broad and Chris Jordan also contributing to the encouraging comeback.
Sri Lanka’s final pair appeared to be riding out the final two overs, and steadying the ship for the visitors, but with the fifth ball of the final over, up went Reiffel’s finger. England were celebrating an unbelievable victory – so unbelievable that in fact it didn’t happen. DRS revealed an inside edge and the joy (or relief) was all Sri Lanka’s.
England have named the same squad for the second test of the series that begins on Friday, and they will take encouragement from the bowling statistics and look to get ahead in the series.