Tillakaratne Dilshan got a bad Umpiring decision for the second time in this match to get out lbw cheaply on the fourth day morning. The dashing opener put in a good stride forward and padded up a sharp off break from Harbhajan Singh which had enough bounce as well. The ball had clipped the outside of the frontpad and the Indians put in a vociferous appeal to force Daryl Harper in raising his finger up. The Umpire must have thought it was a full ball that would go onto hit the stumps but it was actually at good length and turning and bouncing past the leg stump.
Dilshan (16 from 27 balls) got dismissed in the 6th over of the morning which forced Sri Lanka to go into a defensive mould. Harbhajan Singh was at the peak of his bowling by mixing up the pace and flight. Both the left handers – Tharanga Paranavitana and Kumar Sangakkara were beaten regularly by the quick turn and bounce.
Dhoni for some reason rested Harbhajan and brought in Pragyan Ojha which released the pressure on the two batsmen. Paranavitana played a couple of big shots with the ball turning in. Ojha was bowling too straight to the left handers which made their task easier. The left arm spinner produced a couple of top edges from Sangakkara’s sweep shots which fell safely and that was all he could do in his bowling spell. The Indian Captain brought back Harbhajan 30 minutes before Lunch and the offie continued to torment the two left handers but without any luck. Sri Lanka survived the session to move onto 84 for 1 in 31 overs and are trailing by 249 runs.
Paranavitana is on 42 from 97 balls with 7 fours and Sangakkara is looking good against the two pacers and has got 22 from 62 balls. The ball has just started to reverse a bit and once it gets old, the spinners will get more grip off the surface. The ball could also stop onto the bat as the day progresses which should make strokeplay a bit difficult. Harbhajan Singh is the man who can win this match for India, so far he has been superbly accurate to have figures of 11-3-28-1. Pragyan Ojha should come into play once the two left handers perish with the remaining batsmen mostly being right handers.
Originally posted 2009-12-05 06:36:37.