The fourth day of the first Test between India and Sri Lanka proved to be all about the home team, who were pumped up at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday. After India bowled out Sri Lanka with a brilliant bowling performance from their pacers, openers Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul, who had both missed out in the first innings made up for it.
Dhawan fell six runs short of the triple figure mark while Rahul is still at the batting crease with 73 runs under his belt. Their 166-run opening stand paved a strong foundation for India, who lead by 49 runs.
STUMPS: India 171/1, 39.3 overs
Update: 4:19 pm: 166/1.
India lose Shikhar for 94 runs.
4:14 pm: 159/0, 36 overs.
It is just getting better and better for India, who have taken a lead of 37 runs, and India have not lost a single wicket.
Can India end the day without losing any wicket?
3:30 pm : 116/0, 27 overs.
Both Shikhar and Rahul have completed their respective half-centuries, and are looking to good to score a ton as well. India trail by JUST six runs.
2:30 pm: India 70/0, trail by 52 runs.
IT IS TEA TIME AT EDEN.
The pitch seems to have eased out remendously as Shikhar and Rahul have been hardly troubled by the Lankan bowlers.
2:05: India 54 for the loss of no wicket in 13 overs.
KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan are batting with absolute ease at the middle, scoring at 4 runs per over. They completed their 50 runs in the 13th over of the match. Rahul and Shikhar have played some glorious shots in their stay so far.
12:55 pm: Sri Lanka ALL OUT for 294 runs.
Shami has picked up the final wicket of the visitors' innings, but they have a good lead of 122 runs. Shami and Bhuvneshwar were the pick of the bowlers with four scalps each. Slow left-arm Rangana Herath top-scored for Sri Lanka with 67 runs.
INDIA TRAIL BY 122 runs.
11:35am IST: LUNCH at Eden Gardens!
Sri Lanka head into the break with a handy 91-run lead, thanks to Rangana Herath, who managed to frustrate the Indian bowlers and hit an unbeaten 43.
SL 263 for 8 in 74 overs.
Mohammed Shami though was brilliant in the morning session, managing to pick up three wickets, including those of Dinesh Chandimal and Niroshan Dickwella. India though need to quickly finish things off and batt well post lunch if they are to avoid a defeat in the first Test.
11: 10 am IST: OUT! Dilruwan Perera's (5 off 34 balls) stay at the crease ends as he is undone by a Mohammed Shami ripper.
SL 244/8 in 69 overs; lead IND by 72 runs.
The all-rounder was also involved in a controversial DRS call as he started walking back to the pavillion after umpire Nigel Llong gave him out lbw in the 58th over of the innings only to turn back and ask for a review, which went in favuor.
The 35-year-old might have asked the dressing room for suggestion as replays suggested a few hands went up in the Sri Lankan dressing room before the batsman changed his mind about the DRS decision.
10am IST: INDIA BOUNCE BACK! Mohammed Shami and Bhuvneshwar Kumar strike in quick sucession as Sri Lanka lose wickets in a flurry.
Dinesh Chandimal (28) is the latest to walk back to the pavillion. Shami kept bowling a teasing line to the Sri Lankan skipper and forced him to knick one. The local lad is on fire!
Earlier, Bhuvneshwar Kumar removed Dasun Shanaka with a lovely inswinger that trapped the batsman in front.
9:48am IST: OUT! Mohammed Shami gets Niroshan Dickwella (35) with a ripper, snaps 62 runs stand. Sri Lanka were racing ahead as both the left-hander and skipper Dinesh Chandimal were going strong on Sunday.
SL 200/5, lead IND by 28 runs.
Shami kept troubling the batsmen since the start of play and he has been rewarded with a wicket. Dasun Shanaka is the new man for Sri Lanka.
9am IST: We're 15 minutes away from the start of play and It's shining bright in Kolkata. Sri Lanka are looking good to take a handy first innings lead.
Angelo Mathews and Lahiru Thirimanne hit half centuries on Saturday to put the visitors on the driver's seat in the ongoing first of the three-match Test series at Eden Gardens. Indian bowlers will have their work cut out on the penultimate day.
Good news for the hosts is that Mohammed Shami, who walked off with a niggle towards the end of Day 3, is fit to bowl.
Pitch Report - The track will assist batters a bit more than the first three days, is the news from the center.
"It was very green on Day 1. Now it's nice and brown, should be great for batting. India will have the hopes that if they can get a couple of quick wickets, they can restrict the Lankans. If Sri Lanka get through that, they will make hay here," says Sunil Gavaskar and Simon Doull at the pitch report.
Fifties from Lahiru Thirimanne and Angelo Mathews kept Sri Lanka firmly on course for a handy first-innings lead against India on day three of the rain-hit first test on Saturday, November 18.
The islanders, bidding for their first test victory in India, dismissed the hosts for 172 and closed on 165-4, as the rain stayed away after allowing only 32.5 overs to be bowled in the first two days.
Niroshan Dickwella was batting on 14 when bad light stopped play and skipper Dinesh Chandimal was on 13 with the tourists seven runs behind.
After India resumed on a precarious 74-5, the bottom half of their order contributed 98 runs in the morning session to lend respectability to their total on a green Eden Gardens track.
Cheteshwar Pujara brought up his 16th test fifty but was clean bowled by Lahiru Gamage for 52, a patient knock in trying conditions that included 10 boundaries.
Wriddhiman Saha and Ravindra Jadeja refused to retreat into a defensive shell, though they were not entirely convincing during their 48-run partnership.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Saha, who made 29, was lucky to get a reprieve four runs before his dismissal when Dickwella missed an easy stumping off Dilruwan Perera.
Jadeja, who made 22, hit Perera for a six over long-on but the off-spinner responded by removing both batsmen in the same over.
Suranga Lakmal dismissed Bhuvneshwar Kumar to claim his fourth wicket, his tidy 19 overs including 12 maidens.
Mohammed Shami made a breezy 24 down the order but India still fell short of the 175-run mark.
Sadeera Samarawickrama's 23 off 22 balls gave Sri Lanka a fast start but Kumar exploited the conditions well to peg back the tourists.
The paceman dismissed Dimuth Karunaratne lbw for eight and had Samarawickrama caught behind in his next over.
Despite their occasional discomfort against the moving ball, Thirimanne and Mathews thwarted the hosts with a match-high 99-run stand.
(With inputs from Reuters)