Tim Southee and Trent Boult took two wickets apiece as New Zealand dominated a rain-truncated second day of the second Test at the P Sara Oval. (Image credit: Twitter)
For the second consecutive day of the second Test between Sri Lanka and New Zealand at the P Sara Oval in Colombo, rain played spoilsport. After 36.3 overs were possible on day 1, only 29.3 overs were possible on day 2 as rain washed out the entire second and the third session on Friday. However, in the period the action took place, New Zealand's Tim Southee and Trent Boult wrecked the top order and gave themselves a chance to come back on level terms after their loss in the Galle Test.
When play resumed on day 2, Sri Lanka skipper Dimuth Karunaratne notched up a fifty and looked good for a big score. However, in the 42nd over, Boult showed his class and dented the middle order. Boult accounted for Angelo Mathews with a short ball down the leg side and Mathews, who had struggled in the entire innings, got a thin edge to the keeper BJ Watling. A couple of balls later, Kusal Perera shouldered arms to an incoming delivery and was trapped plumb in front.
New Zealand continued to create chances and Boult should have gotten rid of Dhananjaya de Silva but he dropped a simple return catch as New Zealand struggled to come to terms with a wet ball. The outfield at the P Sara was wet with all the rain and when the ball raced across the outfield, New Zealand lost the ability to swing the ball.
Karunaratne continued to make good progress and was fortunate when Kane Williamson dropped his opposite counterpart on 61 off Ajaz Patel as Sri Lanka looked to make New Zealand pay. However, Tim Southee came back and in the 58th over, he once again tilted the balance in New Zealand's favour.
In the third ball of the over, Southee got a full ball to seam away outside off and Karunaratne suffered a lapse in concentration as he edged the delivery to the keeper. Three balls later, Niroshan Dickwella was sent packing as he poked another away-swinger from Southee.
Dhananjaya de Silva held firm and along with Dilruwan Perera ensured that Sri Lanka suffered no further lapses until the lunch break. However, that was all the action that fans got to see on day 2 as persistent rain ensured that no further play would be possible.