Sri Lanka vs New Zealand cricket match .New Zealand won by an innings and 65 runs.At present this is the ‘winning-est’ of years with at least ten Tests in the entire history of Test cricket.” Here are the numbers. There will be more cricket soon, join us for that. Till then, this is Saurabh, signing off on behalf of Ankur and Ranjith.
5.05 pm: Right so that ends this series. 26 consecutive Tests in Sri Lanka that have had an outright winner. Lots of great performances in these two games, and points split evenly – which is a fair result. And leaving you with a wonderful stat, courtesy our stats maven Shiva Jayaraman. “At present this is the ‘winning-est’ of years with at least ten Tests in the entire history of Test cricket.” Here are the numbers. There will be more cricket soon, join us for that. Till then, this is Saurabh, signing off on behalf of Ankur and Ranjith.
Kane Williamson: “(on what he did differently from Galle) – Lost the toss! (smiles). But a great effort to push for victory and ultimately come out on the winning side. Naturally when the game starts coming so close, and the light’s always a factor here as well this time of the year (you do get tense). But it was an outstanding effort from the first innings itself. And then the batters scored at a rate that allowed us to move the game forward. Great individual contributions that allowed us to get the win. Deserve to be 1-1.
Our bowlers bowled really nicely in the UAE as well, but as a collective they got breakthroughs at key moments. Everybody will gain things personally and as a group our general growth is important. Looking forward to my break, the guys are going for some T20 cricket. The international calendar is busy so the moments you do get some time off to refresh are nice.”
Dimuth Karunaratne: “I think it was a pretty good wicket. We needed to be patient and put a big score, 240-odd wasn’t enough. We need some partnerships, we keep losing wickets regularly. That’s the key. But some positives are there. Dhananjay batted really well. But at the end of the day we need to put our hands up and say we didn’t do well. But once the batters get a start, we need to get a big one, like Tom and BJ did. Dhananajay and Dickwella were the biggest positives, and the bowlers also did really well.”
BJ Watling is the Man of the Series. – his first ever Man of the Series.
Tom Latham is the Man of the Match. “Nice to contribute, we had partnerships throughout the innings. As a batting unit, we look to do that. I don’t think we did anything different (to the first Test). We hadn’t played Test cricket in a while so just those little adjustments. Conditions are a lot different over here than they are at home, so it’s nice to come over here and contribute. (Dickwella catch) – as soon as I saw him go down, I went to my left. Probably a bit lucky it hit his arm and slowed down. The bowlers did extremely well to get all the wickets.”
4.55pm: Time for the presentations.
Lots of you asking questions about the World Test championship and how it works. Our explainer has all the answers. Trust me, really it does.
Suley: “Great to see NZ perform well regardless of Williamson. Great depth”
Pratik: “Really happy with the performance of Southee. Lost his place to Matt Henry in limited overs side, almost has been out of favour in Tests too with Wagner faring well. Well done Sixer Southee. 6 wickets and some handsome Sixes with the bat.”
Sandy: “Three matches of ICC Test Championship started same day and all three gave results. Bright future for Test Cricket.”
Ashish Agarwal: “@Saurabh, you were the one NZ needed. 2 wickets in 8 balls of your commentary…” – I’m going to be rushing through my visa to see if I can make it in time for the presentation ceremony to pick up my Man of the Match award…
4.44pm: The gloom was setting in – in the sky certainly and perhaps in New Zealand hearts too, but even as the day’s play was ending, New Zealand managed to winkle out the last two wickets. The series is at 1-1, and both teams are on 60 points now in the World Test Championship table.
Really remarkable effort by New Zealand to close out victory in a match so heavily affected by rain. It almost looked like the sequence of results in Test cricket in Sri Lanka would be broken, but we now have 26 straight Tests that have had an outright winner in Sri Lanka. Ben Stokes may be keeping Test cricket pumping, and Jofra Archer, Steven Smith, Jasprit Bumrah and Virat Kohli may be grabbing the headlines – but if you want to keep Test cricket alive, hey just play in Sri Lanka! They don’t know the meaning of a draw here.
Boult to Embuldeniya, OUT, it’s all over! A superb short ball from Trent Boult and New Zealand have squared the series. Fast, rising up awkwardly from back of a length and it’s too much for a tailender. He’s trying to get out of the way by ducking, but it’s homing in on his ribs and he is too slow to get his gloves down. The ball flies off the gloves to second slip