Alex and Jamie hit half-centuries as England Lions pile up 234 | Daily News

Alex and Jamie hit half-centuries as England Lions pile up 234

England Lions paceman Joe's Tongue celebrating his five-wicket haul after the innings.
England Lions paceman Joe's Tongue celebrating his five-wicket haul after the innings.

Opener Alex Lees (75) and wicketkeeper Jamie Smith (86) shared an unbroken 112-run fourth wicket partnership as England Lions were 234 for 3 wickets in a bold reply to Sri Lanka A's first innings total of 332 after the second day's play of the second four-day unofficial Test match played at the Galle International Cricket Stadium yesterday.

It was nice to see England Lions batsmen made a very positive reply to Sri Lanka's A team at Galle wicket. The opener Alex Lees the 29-year-old left-hander from Durham played a superb innings and along with wicketkeeper/batsman, 22-year-old Surrey player Jamie Smith who made an explosive knock of 86 in just 56 balls with 10 fours and 5 sixes stitched a 112-run partnership in just 86 balls to pose a huge challenge for Sri Lanka 'A' bowlers. Skipper Haseeb Hameed the opener was the first to walk off after he was spectacularly caught by wicketkeeper Lahiru Udara off the bowling of Chamika Kaunaratne in his first over while number three batter Tom Abell was scoring 4 in 8 balls caught by Nishan Madushka off the bowling of Vishwa Fernando.

Josh Bohannan the 25-year-old Lancashire middle order batsman played a fine innings of 54 in 62 balls with 9 fours while younger brother Nuwanidu Fernando took the catch at slip to dismiss Bohannan off the bowling of elder brother Vishwa Fernando, who was the most successful bowler of the Sri Lanka A 'side finishing with a spell of 2-44 from his 10 overs and Chamika Kaunaratne took 1 wicket 42. Karunaratne bowled 5 overs, where opener Lees smashed him for three back-to-back fours.

Skipper Nipun Dhananjaya who scored a fine knock of 61 (left) celebrating his half century with Lakshitha Manasinghe at Galle yesterday. (Pix courtesy SLC)

Earlier Sri Lanka A resumed the day at the overnight score of 190 for 3 wickets while opener Lasith Croospulle who remained unbeaten on 122 at close of the first day was unable to stay long at the crease as he could add only 6 runs yesterday. Matthew Fisher who was at backward point took a flying one-handed catch to dismiss Croospulle in the 53rd over which was bowled by Joe's Tongue who claimed a five-wicket haul with 5 for 76 in his 22-over spell. Lahiru Udara the wicketkeeper/batsman was out on a first-ball duck off the bowling of Tongue with a controversial catch taken by leg slip Josh Bohannan while experienced Chamika Kaunaratne who batted at number seven was unable to score a single run facing only three deliveries when he was caught by Alex Lees off Tongue.

Two spinners Lakshitha Manasinghe and Lasith Embuldeniya performed with the bat scoring 43 and 42 respectively to build up the total while skipper Nipun Dhananjaya once again among the runs and scored a fighting knock of 61 in 104 balls with 10 fours guided to pass the 300 mark on this Galle wicket. England Lions team came here with their full supporting staff while England Cricket Board Managing Director Robert Key the former England cricketer is with the team to observe their youngster's performance. Key who played 15 Tests presently works in the top post of the ECB while two former cricketers Graham Swan and Ian Bell the head coach are busy with the team. Pramodya Wickramasinghe the chairman of the National cricket committee and former SLC Treasure Nuzki Mohammed were also present to see the game.

Chief scores

Sri Lanka A: 332 (Nishan Madushka 22, Lasith Croospulle 128, Nuwanindu Fernando 22, Nipun Dhananjaya 61, Lakshitha Manasinghe 43, Lasith Embuldeniya 42, Sam Cook 2/69, Matthew Fisher 5/76, Jack Carson 1/30)

England Lions: 234 for 3 wickets at close (Alex Lees 75*, Josh Bohannan 54, Jamie Smith 56*, Vishwa Fernando 2/44, Chamika Kaunaratne 1/42)


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