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Sri Lanka spinner Rangana Herath continues Galle love affair with 5-65 against New Zealand

Rangana Herath (R) celebrates another Sri Lanka wicket with Thilan Samaraweera

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Sri Lanka spinner Rangana Herath was delighted to continue his Galle love affair in taking 5-65 to help dismiss New Zealand for 221 on the opening day of the first Test.

The left-armer's return was his fourth five-wicket haul in eight matches at the International Cricket Stadium and meant 40 of his 159 Test wickets have come there in Galle.

New Zealand struck back late on with Tim Southee dismissing Sri Lanka debutant Dimuth Karunaratne leg-before wicket for nought as the home side reached 9-1 at close of play.

"We have to look forward to tomorrow and it is a big first hour for us to try and expose the Sri Lanka middle-order. If we can then that will make today's disappointment easier to handle."

Brendon McCullum

"I really like it (here in Galle)," Herath said. "I made my (Test) debut here and most of the time I have done well here in Galle.

"We've done well. If we can get runs tomorrow we are well ahead in the game," he added.

Herath dismissed the tourists' top-scorers, Brendon McCullum (68) and Daniel Flynn (53), and was well supported by seam bowlers Shaminda Eranga (3-51) and Nuwan Kulasekara (2-31).

Opener McCullum smacked eight fours and two sixes in an innings which mixed positivity with watchful defence while Flynn passed a half-century for the first time in Tests in more than three years, facing 152 balls and hitting seven fours.

"It was not the batting performance we were after as you win the toss in Galle and hope to get more than 400," McCullum said.

"The pitch was good. It turned more than you might expect on day one but you also expect that in the sub-continent.

"We have to look forward to tomorrow and it is a big first hour for us to try and expose the Sri Lanka middle-order. If we can then that will make today's disappointment easier to handle."