England uproot Sri Lanka top order

Dr. Harsha Cabral PC

SOUTHAMPTON, June 16, 2011 (AFP) – Sri Lanka were reduced to 81 for four against England on a rain-marred first day of the third and final Test at the Rose Bowl here on Thursday. Only 38 overs out of a scheduled 90 were possible on the opening day of what was the first Test ever staged at the home of southern county Hampshire.

But that was enough time for England, 1-0 up in this series, to rip through a top order lacking Sri Lanka captain Tillakaratne Dilshan, out with a broken thumb suffered while making 193 in the drawn second Test at Lord’s.

By contrast stand-in skipper Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene, the tourists’ two most experienced batsmen, have yet to score a fifty this series and managed a mere six runs combined on Thursday.

James Anderson marked his comeback to England duty by taking two wickets, while the 6ft 7in Chris Tremlett, who troubled Sri Lanka with his pace and bounce, also struck twice on the ground where he made his name.

Anderson ended the day with a return of two for 24 runs in 16 overs while Tremlett, who until his move to Surrey last season played for Hampshire, had two for 17 in just 11.

Sri Lanka were in dire straits at