Lankans Put Up Better Show But India Still In Driver's SeatRahul Dravid struck his second consecutive century as India racked up a mammoth total and then made an early dent in the Sri Lankan top order to maintain their iron grip over the second cricket
Rahul Dravid struck his second consecutive century as India racked up a mammoth total and then made an early dent in the Sri Lankan top order to maintain their iron grip over the second cricket Test on Wednesday in Kanpur.
In reply to India's imposing first innings total of 642, the weary Sri Lankans signed off day two on 66 for one with the spectre of a follow-on looming large over them.
And they would have to accomplish the task without their most dangerous batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan, who was left to cool his heels in the hut with an unflattering golden duck against his name.
Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara (30) and Tharanga Paranavitana (30) were in the middle at stumps, their team still trailing India by a whopping 576 runs and they would return tomorrow with a mountain to climb.
Pummelled into ignoniminy on day one by Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir, the Sri Lankans today defied the docility of the track and the blazing Indian blades to restrict the hosts to 642 after tea with Dravid hogging the limelight with 144.
Resuming on 417 for two, India lost their last six wickets for a meagre 29 runs when the 700-mark was quite in sight.
The late collapse notwithstanding, it was a formidable batting display by the hosts with three centuries and two half centuries to boot. Among the top six batsmen, only Sachin Tendulkar (40) missed out on a half-century, such was India's batting dominance.
Rahul Dravid hit a fluent 144 -- his 28th ton -- to overtake Allan Border (11,174) in the Test run accumulators' chart. Dravid (11,182) now sits fourth in the list topped by Tendulkar (12,917).
His middle order colleague VVS Laxman hit an elegant 63, while Yuvraj Singh (67) survived some torrid moments against Muttiah Muralitharan to notch up his eighth fifty.
Herath (5/121) led Sri Lanka's fightback, while his spin colleagues Ajantha Mendis (2/162) and Muralitharan (2/175) also chipped in to share the spoils.
While Indian openers laid the foundation for an awe-inspiring total with a 233-run stand, Sri Lanka's reply could not have got off to a worst start.
The first ball sent down by Zaheer Khan proved a wicket-taking one and it was the prize scalp of Sri Lankan dangerman Tillakaratne Dilshan.
The maverick opener could only watch in horror as his leading edge ballooned up, allowing debutant Pragyan Ojha rush from mid-on to place himself beneath the ball.
Sangakkara and Paranavitana steadied the ship with a an unbeaten stand. Both showed their occasional feet of clay against Harbhajan Singh and survived umpteen LBW appeals but gamely hung on to fight for another day. PTI