ICC World Cup Preview: Struggling Sri Lanka look to change fortunes

By Mariah Ramharack May 15, 2019

An experience Sri Lanka looks to turn around poor form heading to World Cup.

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    Kane Williamson and Akila Dananjaya have been reported for suspect bowling actions during the first Test between New Zealand and Sri Lanka, the ICC has confirmed.

    Sri Lanka ran out comfortable six-wicket winners in Galle, but players on both sides were cited on the match officials' report for possible illegal bowling.

    Williamson, an occasional off-spin bowler, sent in just three overs for nine runs in the match, all in the final innings.

    Dananjaya, meanwhile, was decisive in his side's victory, with a first-innings five-for putting Sri Lanka in control. He added a more modest 1-84 next time out.

    The 25-year-old served a suspension late last year after his bowling action was reported in a Test against England.

    Both Williamson and Dananjaya will undergo testing within 14 days but can continue to bowl in the meantime, as the second and final Test begins on Thursday.

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  • Karunaratne hits a century as Sri Lanka make light work of New Zealand Karunaratne hits a century as Sri Lanka make light work of New Zealand

    Sri Lanka cruised to a six-wicket victory over New Zealand as Dimuth Karunaratne scored his first century in 23 innings on day five of the first Test in Galle.

    Karunaratne - who had reached 71 not out to lead Sri Lanka to 133-0 at the close of day four - scored 122 as he maintained his perfect record as Test captain.

    Tom Latham's drop let Karunaratne off the hook early in Sunday's play and, though the hosts eventually lost their skipper when he edged Tim Southee behind, the damage was already done.

    Angelo Matthews (28 not out) picked up the mantle and with the umpires granting an extension prior to lunch he sealed the win, and 60 ICC Test Championship points, when he nudged Trent Boult for a single, with Sri Lanka successfully chasing down 267, bettering their previous record run chase at Galle (99).

    After a superb knock in the last session of day four, Karunaratne picked up where he left off, clipping New Zealand's spin bowlers around the pitch with ease.

    Karunaratne hit six fours and one maximum, with that huge hit over midwicket from Ajaz Patel bringing up a 150 partnership with Lahiru Thirimanne (64), who was dismissed three overs later when the Black Caps reviewed an initially unsuccessful lbw appeal.

    Kusal Mendis (10) was quick to stamp his authority on proceedings - hitting William Somerville for four on his second delivery before he launched a six over long on.

    Mendis' cameo was a short one, though, with Patel drawing a lazy sweep that Sri Lanka's number three wedged straight to Jeet Raval.

    But Matthews steadied the ship, keeping the strike ticking over between himself and Karunaratne, and the latter ended his long wait for a ninth Test hundred when he lobbed Patel for four.

    With the hosts firmly in control, Sri Lanka's batsmen picked up the pace and, though Southee ended Karunaratne's innings before Kusal Perera (23) sent a Boult delivery to Mitchell Santner, Matthews gave Sri Lanka a 1-0 lead in the two-match series four overs later.

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