Second Test Match
Sri Lanka 416 (T T Samaraweera 143, D P M D Jayawardene 92, K C Sangakkara 50, J S Patel 4-78) & 311-5 dec (K C Sangakkara 109, D P M D Jayawardene 96) v New Zealand 234 (L R P L Taylor 81) & 397 (D L Vettori 140, J D P Oram 56, D R Flynn 50, H M R K B Herath 5-139)
Sri Lanka beat New Zealand by 96 runs
Sri Lanka closed out a 2-0 series whitewash despite a valiant effort from New Zealand's lower-order batsmen on the final day of the second Test in Colombo.
Chasing a victory target of 494 on a wearing pitch at the Sinhalese Sports Club, New Zealand resumed on the fifth morning at 182-6 and staring a heavy defeat in the face.
But a career-best innings of 140 from captain Daniel Vettori briefly raised the prospect of the tourists pulling off the highest run chase in Test history.
Vettori and Jacob Oram extended their seventh-wicket stand to 124 as Sri Lanka searched in vain for a breakthrough throughout most of the morning session.
The hosts spurned several chances, including a sharp opportunity from Vettori that flew to the right of Mahela Jayawardene at second slip.
Seamer Dammika Prasad (1-56), the bowler that found Vettori's outside edge during a fine spell, was also denied an lbw decision against Oram in his next over.
Left-arm spinner Rangana Herath dropped a throw at the non-striker's end to squander a clear run out chance and the home team's woes worsened further when star spinner Muttiah Muralitharan limped from the field in the 21st over of the day due to a suspected groin strain.
It took the introduction of Tillakaratne Dilshan (1-15) to turn the tide, the part-time spinner having Oram (56) caught from a mistimed drive at short cover in the penultimate over before lunch.
New Zealand went to the break on 302-7 but the return of Muralitharan after the interval finally broke their brave rearguard.
He removed Jeetan Patel (12) and Herath (5-139) completed his five-wicket haul with the scalp of Iain O'Brien (12) to leave Sri Lanka on the brink.
Vettori, who went to his fourth Test hundred from 139 balls with 11 boundaries, was last out for 140 from a top-edged attempt to sweep Muralitharan (3-85).
New Zealand's final total of 397 was the highest ever made in the final innings of a Test in Sri Lanka.
The result also sees Sri Lanka consolidate second place in the ICC Test rankings behind South Africa.