Karunaratne and Thirimanne hit centuries

Lankan openers set record stand on yet another docile pitch

Sri Lanka skipper Dimuth Karunaratne made a second straight century against Bangladesh in the second Test here as the host dominated the opening day, closing on a commanding 291 for one.

The captain followed his double century in the first Test with a 118 (190b, 15×4), sharing an opening partnership of 209 with Lahiru Thirimanne who batted all day for 131 not out ((253b, 14×4).

Elite club

Karunaratne also joined an elite club of 10 Lankan players who have scored over 5,000 Test runs with his tally now standing at 5,110.

After a tediously high-scoring draw in the first Test, the pitch at Pallekele, censured by the ICC as being below average, provided little for the bowlers.

The only chance given by Karunaratne was dropped at first slip by Najmul Shanto off the bowling of Taskin Ahmed when the Sri Lankan skipper was on 28.

The left-hander has been in fine form this year having posted four fifties and two centuries.

His tally of 648 runs is the second highest in Test cricket in 2021, behind England captain Joe Root’s 794.

Karunaratne feathered a catch to wicketkeeper Liton Das to give 19-year-old debutant Shoriful Islam his first wicket in Test cricket.

His partnership of 209 with Thirimanne is the highest for the first wicket in Tests between the two countries bettering the 144-run stand between Marvan Atapattu and Sanath Jayasuriya in 2001.


Bangladesh left out Ebadot Hossain, handing teenage left-arm seamer Shoriful his first Test cap.

Sri Lanka made two changes bringing in left-arm spinner Praveen Jayawickrama and off-spinner Ramesh Mendis in place of Wanindu Hasaranga and Lahiru Kumara.

The scores: Sri Lanka 291/1 in 90 overs (Karunaratne 118, Thirimanne 131 batting, Oshada Fernando 40 batting) v Bangladesh. Toss: Sri Lanka.

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