Ishant claims five as Indians extend lead in warm-up game

Colombo, Aug 7 (IANS) Pacer Ishant Sharma claimed an impressive five-wicket haul to restrict Sri Lanka Board President’s XI to 121 in their first innings as India extended their second innings lead to 342 at stumps on day two of their three-day practice game here on Friday.

Lokesh Rahul (47) and Cheteshwar Pujara (31) were the unbeaten batsmen at stumps on the second day as the visitors scored 112/3 in 40 overs at the R. Premadasa Stadium.

Resuming the day at 314/6, Indians added 37 more runs to be finally bowled out for 351 as right-arm medium pacer Kasun Rajitha finished with figures of 5/68.

In reply, the hosts were in disarray as Ishant (5/23) dismantled the hosts’ top order to leave them reeling at 10/5 inside eight overs.

There was no chance for the hosts to stage a comeback as some tight bowling by the Indians made life even more difficult for the hosts.

Milinda Siriwardana (32), Niroshan Dickwella (41) and Danushka Gunathilaka (28) somehow managed to help their team cross the 100-run mark.

Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin (2/8) and pacer Varun Aaron (2/42) gave good support to Ishant.

Coming in to bat in the second innings, Indians faced early hiccups as opener Rohit Sharma (8) and Wriddhiman Saha (1) failed to impress.

Skipper Virat Kohli (18) who came to open the innings yet again struggled to get runs under his belt. In the first innings, too, he failed, managing just eight.

Indians were reduced to 28/3 in 10.2 overs but from there on Pujara and Rahul held on to take the lead past the 300-run mark and kept the visitors in comfortable position with a day to go in the warm-up match.

Brief scores: India 351 and 112/3 in 40 overs (Lokesh Rahul 47, Cheteshwar Pujara 31, Vishwa Fernando 2/17) vs Sri Lanka Board President’s XI 121 in 31 overs (Niroshan Dickwella 41; Ishant Sharma 5/23, R Ashwin 2/8, Varun Aaron 2/42)

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