Dilshan century denies India
Dashing century inspires Sri Lanka in Ahmenabad
By Joe Drabble. Last Updated: 04/12/09 6:33pm
Dilshan: 10th Test century
First Test Match
India 426 (R Dravid 177, M S Dhoni 110, Yuvraj Singh 68, U W M B C A Welegedara 4-87) v Sri Lanka 275-3 (T M Dilshan 112)
Tillakaratne Dilshan's 10th Test century and second as an opening batsman prompted a Sri Lanka fight back on day two of the first Test against India in Ahmedabad.
The aggressive right-hander cracked 112 off 133 balls to boost the tourists towards 275-3 at stumps after India had wilted to 426 all out earlier in the day.
Rahul Dravid failed to build on his overnight 177 in the morning session, and it was then left to Muttiah Muralitharan (3-97) to mop up the tail with India only able to add a further 21 to their first-innings score
Sri Lanka duo Mahela Jayawardene (36 not out) and Thilan Samaraweera (45no) will return to the middle on Wednesday as the tourists go in search of their first Test match victory in India.
The victory still remains possible, largely due to India's failure to add to their promising position of 385-6 at the start of the second day.
Dravid fell in the second over of the morning, the impressive Chanaka Welegedara (4-87) getting a delivery to nip back through his defences and into middle stump via an inside edge.
At this point the hosts never looked like batting their opponents out of the game, and the introduction of spinners Muralitharan and Rangara Herath quickly wrapped up the innings.
Sri Lanka remained in the ascendancy right through until lunch, Dilshan and opening partner Tharanga Paranavitana safely negotiating a tricky new ball spell.
The pair added 74 for the first wicket, Ishant Sharma eventually providing the breakthrough when Mahendra Singh Dhoni caught brilliantly to dismiss Paranavitana for 35.
Skipper Kumar Sangakkara then joined Dilshan in the middle and the pair batted with caution to reach 155-1 at tea - 271 runs behind India's first innings score.
While Sangakkara remained content to pick up the singles where possible, Dilshan took his boundary count into double figures before bringing up his century in style.
Sharma's delivery was short and wide, and the right-hander needed no invitation to rock back and slash the ball behind point to bring up his milestone.
India did get their man soon after however, Zaheer Khan (2-45) luring Dilshan into an ugly hook which was gleefully pouched by Dravid running in on the off side.
Sangakkara departed five runs later in a similar fashion, another Zaheer short ball luring the Sri Lanka captain into a uppish hook which Sachin Tendulkar calmly claimed on the fine-leg boundary.
But any hopes India may have had of making further inroads into the Sri Lanka order quickly evaporated.
Jayawardene and Samaraweera looked comfortable during their unbroken 81-run partnership and will return to the middle with Sri Lanka 151 runs behind India's first-innings score.