Sri Lanka on top as New Zealand slumps to 124-6
GALLE, Sri Lanka (AP) — Spin bowlers Lasith Embuldeniya and Dhananjaya de Silva shared five wickets as Sri Lanka appeared in control of the first test after restricting New Zealand to 124-6 Friday at tea on Day 3.
The Back Caps lead Sri Lanka by 106 runs with four second-innings wickets left.
New Zealand resumed after lunch on 18-1, having earlier erased a slender 18-run deficit after dismissing Sri Lanka for 267 in its first innings. But the visitors struggled in the second session with spinners extracting more turn and bounce at Galle Stadium.
Kiwi captain Kane Williamson, who failed to score in the first innings, was out cheaply again for four runs when he was caught by Kusal Perera off Embuldeniya. Williamson stepped out to hit a flighted delivery from the left-arm spinner, mistimed it and was caught brilliantly by Perera who ran back from mid-off, leapt and took the catch.
Ross Taylor (3), top scorer in the first innings with 86, tried to hit a wider delivery from Embuldeniya past cover and was caught at slip by de Silva.
Opener Tom Latham made 45 before de Silva lured him forward and had him caught at slip by Lahiru Thirimane.
Henry Nicolls was also caught at slip by Kusal Mendis off de Silva for 26.
Mitchell Santner was out just before tea caught by Suranga Lakmal off Embuldeniya. Jeet Raval was dismissed before lunch for four runs.
Embuldeniya had 3-55, and de Silva 2-14.
New Zealand earlier bowled Sri Lanka out for 267.
Niroshan Dickwella fought back with a half-century and an 81-run eighth wicket partnership with No. 9 Lakmal to give Sri Lanka its small lead.
Sri Lanka resumed Day 3 on 227-7 with Dickwella and Lakmal having lifted the innings from a precarious 161-7.
The pair added 15 more runs for the day before Lakmal, who had been hit on the elbow two balls earlier by a rising delivery from fast bowler Trent Boult, edged one to the stumps.
He made 40 in 98 deliveries, including two sixes and three boundaries.
Dickwella was out for 61, caught by Williamson off spin bowler William Somerville. Dickwella hit three boundaries in his 12 half-century in tests.
Spin bowler Ajaz Patel took 5-89, Somerville had 3-83.
New Zealand scored 249 in its first innings.