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England v Sri Lanka, First Test


  • Billy Bowden feeling very proud of himself as his Not Out call on Prior proved spot on.

  • Over 29 - England 102/5 (Ballance 23, Prior 0)
    Prior escaped an lbw decision in the first innings when he was hit on his pad second ball from Herath. This time it has taken three deliveries, and almost identical fashion. Sri Lanka called for a review after the wicketkeeper-batsman lunged forward. It was bat before pad, but, again, he's fractionally outside the line. It's an umpires' call, so with Billy Bowden giving it not out on the field Prior survives.
    6/15/2014 2:18:57 PM
  • Over 30 - England 102/5 (Ballance 23, Prior 0)
    Ballance lets go almost the entire over from Pradeep, meaning it is a maiden.
    England stuck in a bit of a hole here, and the balcony is looking a bit tense all of a sudden. Making for a cracking Test match, though. Lead still 224 and barely moving in the last half-an-hour or so.
    6/15/2014 2:22:32 PM
  • Over 31 - England 107/5 (Ballance 23, Prior 5)
    Prior, as we have come to expect over the years, is going to launch a counter strike here at Sri Lanka.
    He's up and running, literally, when he flicks a full delivery from Herath through mid-wicket for a couple, then the next ball is swept on the full down to fine leg for three more. Ballance, though, is becoming the new Brigadier Block. He hasn't scored a run since Joe Root was dismissed.
    6/15/2014 2:25:21 PM
  • [ianbotham] Herath isn’t a big spinner of the ball but he’s very skilled at changing his pace and his flight.”

    6/15/2014 2:25:30 PM
  • Cook and Root on a nervous-looking England balcony.

    6/15/2014 2:27:24 PM
  • Over 32 - England 103/5 (Ballance 23, Prior 6)
    Fully expert that Prior may well overtake Ballance by the time we reach tea on day four.
    The former gets the only run during the Pradeep over, angling a straight delivery out towards the man at deep square leg. Ballance does try and hit the fifth delivery of the over, but only ends up making contact with fresh air. England's lead now at 230 runs
    6/15/2014 2:29:26 PM
  • Herath .. Only bowler in game in World top 10 rankings
  • Over 33 - England 109/5 (Ballance 23, Prior 7)
    Prior again with the only scoring shot, a pushed drive into the point region picking him up one.
    He did contemplate a sweep before that, only to quickly change his mind when he realised the ball was a little quicker through the air than he first thought. Tremendous control of flight from Herath, perhaps showing the value of picking a frontline spinner? Probably time for three more overs before the tea interval
    6/15/2014 2:33:06 PM
  • Over 34 - England 110/5 (Ballance 23, Prior 8)
    Overs following a pattern here - Prior gets the only runs, finds himself off strike and then watches on as Ballance blocks, or leaves, the rest of the deliveries that follow. Can Herath rattle through six balls quickly, allowing Sri Lanka an extra over before the end of the session?
    6/15/2014 2:37:07 PM
  • Over 35 - England 113/5 (Ballance 25, Prior 9)
    Prior gets a single off the first ball down the ground to long-on, then actually has to do some running again when Ballance plays a shot in anger.
    A paddle sweep brings the left-hander two, breaking his dry spell. He pats back the remaining four deliveries and everyone looks at the umpires to see...yep, we're going to get one more over in before the break. And Sri Lanka are going to change things up, Shaminda Eranga, who was superb earlier in the session, taking over from Pradeep
    6/15/2014 2:40:14 PM
  • Over 36 - England 117/5 (Ballance 25, Prior 13)
    Having got Prior out with a leg-side attack in the first innings, Sri Lanka decide to try the same again in the lead up to tea.
    Eranga comes around the wicket and digs in plenty of short stuff. The biggest issue he causes, however, is for himself. Umpire Reiffel is not impressed with his follow-through, leading to the seamer coming back over the wicket. Prior responds by smashing the final ball, another half tracker, well in front of square with a cracking pull shot. Good way to finish a session that has otherwise belonged to Sri Lanka.
    6/15/2014 2:45:11 PM
  • TEA [tea]
    So that ends an afternoon that has seen England add 90 runs and Sri Lanka take five wickets.
    The hosts lead by 239 runs but have let slip their advantage, Eranga and Herath pegging them back by working their way through the top and middle order. Much now depends on Ballance and Prior
    6/15/2014 2:47:10 PM
  • TEA: #SriLanka have given themselves a huge chance following a spectacular session. Harath & Eranga the stars.

  • Talking of collapses - check our first Club Life of the summer on our blog, featuring Wirral CC, bowled out for three…
  • CLUB LIFE - WIRRAL CC, bowled out for three

    6/15/2014 2:51:23 PM
    [shanewarne] Herath has bowled well, as he has throughout the whole match. He’s an under-estimated bowler – he mixes things up well and uses the crease and flight well.

    6/15/2014 2:54:26 PM
  • Here's that close shave for Prior - his third ball. Herath the bowler. Decision stayed with umpire's call.

    6/15/2014 2:56:22 PM
  • 6/15/2014 3:04:54 PM
  • Over 37 - England 121/5 (Ballance 26, Prior 16)
    This Test match remains in the balance as the players walk out for the evening session on day four. It's exploded into life today. England add four runs from the first over back, bowled by Herath, with Sri Lanka's field a mixture of attack and defence
    6/15/2014 3:09:22 PM
  • Prior ct Thirimanne bld Kulasekara 26 [wicket]

    Just the wicket Sri Lanka wanted and England didn't! Prior edges his flashy cut straight to Thirimanne in the gully
    6/15/2014 3:13:48 PM
  • Over 38 - England 125/6 (Ballance 26, Jordan 4)
    Huge celebrations from Sri Lanka there, they fancy their chances here and why not? Jordan gets off the mark in style with a boundary through the covers. The big plus for England is they bat deep, and they'll need to... The lead is 247
    6/15/2014 3:16:01 PM
  • Prior (26) turns away in dismay after picking out Thirimanne in the gully off Kulasekara. Eng 121-6 #EngvSL

  • Over 39 - England 126/6 (Ballance 27, Jordan 4)
    Just a Ballance single off Herath. Jordan has plenty of company around the bat but plays out the over without alarm
    6/15/2014 3:17:24 PM
  • Over 40 - England 131/6 (Ballance 32, Jordan 4)
    England, all of a sudden, are relying on Ballance to hold this innings together. He is doing a fine job, too, cutting Kulasekara to the rope once more before adding a single to increase England's lead to 253. 300 will be enough, right?
    6/15/2014 3:22:26 PM
  • Over 41 - England 134/6 (Ballance 34, Jordan 5)
    It's tough for Mathews to gauge how much he should attack and defend. There are plenty of gaps in the field and both Jordan and Ballance nudge easy singles off Herath. Three from the over
    6/15/2014 3:25:47 PM
  • A gentle reminder if needed...

    6/15/2014 3:26:09 PM
  • Over 42 - England 134/6 (Ballance 34, Jordan 5)
    Ballance watches an unthreatening an uneventful maiden from Kulasekara drift by
    6/15/2014 3:27:55 PM
  • Over 43 - England 140/6 (Ballance 34, Jordan 11)
    Nice batting from Jordan, playing with the spin on two occasions to take Herath for six runs in total. After easing him through the covers second ball for a couple, Jordan adjusts well after being deceived in the flight to drive for a welcome boundary. England lead by 262
    6/15/2014 3:33:09 PM
  • Over 44 - England 147/6 (Ballance 36, Jordan 16)
    More handy runs from Jordan to end Kulasekara's latest over. Full and wide, Jordan leans on a drive and picks the gap perfectly at extra cover to score four more. The crowd are really getting into this now. England lead by 269
    6/15/2014 3:37:23 PM
  • Over 45 - England 147/6 (Ballance 36, Jordan 16)
    Ballance blocks out a maiden from Herath, who is mixing up his flight nicely
    6/15/2014 3:39:24 PM
  • England lead up to 269 - only two teams have chased more in 4th innings to win a Test at Lord's. #EngvSL

  • Gary Ballance survives a referral for a catch behind. Snickometer does the business. #SkyCricket #EngvSL

  • Over 46 - England 150/6 (Ballance 36, Jordan 19)
    Eranga is back, looking to rekindle some of the magic from his previous spell, where he accounted for Cook, Robson and Bell. Jordan brings up the England 150 with another confident push down the ground before Sri Lanka go up for a huge caught-behind appeal on Ballance. The umpire is unmoved but Sri Lanka REVIEW. Nothing on Hot Spot, a slight murmur on Snicko but nothing conclusive. Not Out.
    6/15/2014 3:47:05 PM
  • Nothing on Hotspot either...

    6/15/2014 3:48:55 PM
  • Over 47 - England 153/6 (Ballance 37, Jordan 21)
    Jordan continues to play positively against Herath and edges and sweeps for singles to keep the scoreboard ticking over. Ballance also brings out the sweep for one as England increase their advantage to 276 runs. This would already be the third highest run-chase of all-time in Lord's Tests
    6/15/2014 3:51:30 PM
  • Over 48 - England 159/6 (Ballance 39, Jordan 23)
    A wide, no-ball and three singles off Eranga's latest over. He's trying everything to prize out a wicket but Ballance and Jordan are looking assured after England's pre-tea wobble. The lead is up to 281
    6/15/2014 4:01:29 PM
  • Over 49 - England 162/6 (Ballance 41, Jordan 24)
    Ballance and Jordan are sweeping Herath well here but the field is set applicably and only singles are accrued. Three off the over
    6/15/2014 4:01:42 PM
  • Over 50 - England 167/6 (Ballance 44, Jordan 24)
    Ballance survives a half-hearted lbw appeal from Eranga early in the over and England scamper two leg byes. The ball pitched outside leg-stump and deep down, the bowler knew it. Ballance then eases a full delivery through extra cover for three to put England 289 runs in front. As things stand, it looks as though England are content to bat out the day
    6/15/2014 4:05:24 PM
  • Ballance & Jordan improve their stand up to 50... Precious runs. #EngvSL

  • Over 51 - England 171/6 (Ballance 48, Jordan 24)
    Ballance squeezes a full delivery from Pradeep through gully to find the boundary for a fifth time. It's a notable boundary too, bringing up the 50 partnership between these two. Ballance is nearing a maiden Test 50 and England lead by 293
    6/15/2014 4:09:54 PM
  • Over 52 - England 173/6 (Ballance 49, Jordan 25)
    Just a single apiece from Ballance and Jordan, who is receiving a short-ball barrage from Eranga at the moment. He's tough as ol' boots Jordan, and ducks and weaves like a top-order batsman
    6/15/2014 4:15:03 PM
  • Ballance reaches fifty - a gutsy innings in a tough situation, says @ShaneWarne . Eng lead by 300 at drinks having reached 178-6. #EngvSL
  • Over 53 - England 178/6 (Ballance 50, Jordan 29)
    50 for Ballance! His first in Test cricket! He's stood firm today amid a flurry of wickets at the other end and England have needed him, too. He's shown all the hallmarks of a solid No 3 and will be hoping this is the first of many notable contributions for England. Jordan then takes England's lead to exactly 300 with another sweet drive down the ground for four. Drinks.
    6/15/2014 4:20:26 PM
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