KANDY, Sri Lanka, July 10, 2007 (AFP) – Bangladesh are hounded by their repeated first innings failures as Sri Lanka seek a 3-0 sweep when the final Test starts here on Wednesday. The hosts, who won the previous two Tests by innings margins and plenty of time to spare, are firm favourites to secure their 10th successive victory over Bangladesh despite the threat of rain.
The tourists are under no illusion they can prevent a clean sweep. All they want to do is bat out the opening day if they are again given first strike on a pace-friendly Asgiriya stadium wicket.
Bangladesh were shot out for 89 and their lowest total of 62 on the opening days of the previous two Tests after being sent in to bat by Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene.
Bangladesh’s young skipper Mohammad Ashraful, who turned 23 on Saturday, admitted he was worried by the way his team surrendered at the start of both Tests.
“Few teams have recovered after making just 89 or 62 in the first innings, so the big defeats that followed did not surprise me at all,” said Ashraful.
“What hurt me is that all the batsmen went down in a heap. The entire top order has to click if we are to put up a