Sri Lanka in for ‘some fireworks’ on uneven pitch

2011-12-28 00:00

SRI LANKAN middle order star batsman Thilan Samaraweera yesterday said that his first innings ton in the second Test against South Africa was special, as he thought his Test career was over earlier in the year.

“When I was not included in the Australian series I thought my career was over, and I watched the Pakistan series [just] burning to play for my country. When I got the call that I was going to be in the South African series as cover for the injured Mahela Jayawardene I knew that I might have only one chance to make a mark and I was happy to do so,” said Samaraweera.

He batted for two sessions on day one and the majority of the morning session of day two before a momentary lapse in concentration saw him loft a ball that had him caught on 102.

“Batting in the first session yesterday was tough. We did not know what to expect from the pitch and added to that the wild card of Marchant de Lange meant that we had hard work to do,” he said.

He added that although they were surprised about the effect that De Lange had on the match, they were partially prepared for him. “We thought he had a long run up, but when we saw it was short we thought back to when we used to face English fast bowler Simon Jones. So we drew on that,” he said.

After being bundled out before lunch yesterday, Sri Lanka bowled South Africa out for 168, their lowest total ever against the visitors. “We were surprised at the uneven bounce we got today, also how much turn Rangana Herath got. And this wicket will not improve, so we are in for some fireworks over the next three days,” he said.

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