Heroic Holder takes five as West Indies dominate day one

 Heroic Holder takes five as West Indies dominate day one
NORTH SOUND   -  A five-wicket haul from Jason Holder put the West Indies on top at stumps on day one of the opening Test against Sri Lanka.

Sent out to bat after losing the toss, Sri Lanka were knocked over for 169, losing five wickets in the final session of the day as Holder took 5/27 in his first Test since being relieved of captaincy duties. The West Indies went to stumps at 13/0 in reply, with new captain Kraigg Brathwaite (7*) and opening partner John Campbell (3*) not out. Holder was adeptly supported with the ball by Kemar Roach, who took 3/47 from his 16 overs. But while the day belonged to the quicks, it was Rahkeem Cornwall’s off-spin that produced the first breakthrough, accounting for Dimuth Karunaratne for 12.

Cornwall (1/25) had the Sri Lanka captain caught at forward short leg by Campbell in the 11th over. No one was more relieved than Jermaine Blackwood, who dropped a simple chance at backward point off Roach an over earlier to grant Karunaratne a life. Things got worse for Sri Lanka in the 16th over as Oshada Fernando (4) was run out by a direct hit from Brathwaite at the striker’s end. 

Vaccine gap grows between rich and poor: WHO chief Brought into the attack in the 21st over, Holder looked dangerous from the get-go. His second delivery was inside edged by Lahiru Thirimanne to fine leg and the third took Dinesh Chandimal’s outside edge, landing just short of second slip. In his fourth over Holder got his reward, drawing another edge from Chandimal (4) that was safely pouched by Joshua Da Silva behind the stumps to trigger an early lunch with the tourists 54/3.

Roach got in on the action after the break, bowling Dhananjaya de Silva (13) through the gate before bouncing out debutant Pathum Nissanka (9) to reduce Sri Lanka to 92/5. A half-century from Thirimanne and a restrained display from Niroshan Dickwella stemmed the flow of wickets before tea as Sri Lanka went into the final session with hopes of finishing the day with bat in hand still intact. And things were looking brighter for Sri Lanka as their score reached 150 without further loss. From there, the wheels came off.

NAB seeks deployment of Rangers for Maryam's appearance Holder drew an outside edge from Dickwella (32) that was caught superbly by Cornwall at first slip to reduce Sri Lanka to 150/6. Four overs later Holder struck again, removing Sri Lanka’s other set man. Having shown admirable restraint throughout, Thirimanne chased a drive outside off stump and only managed an inside edge onto his stumps to fall for 71. 

He struck again in his next over, drawing a leading edge from Suranga Lakmal (3) that landed safely in the hands of point. Roach picked up his third by bowling Dushmantha Chameera (2) before Holder wrapped up the eighth five-wicket haul of his Test career by trapping Lasith Embuldeniya (3) in front. The West Indies will resume play at 13/0, with eyes firmly set on a big first-innings lead.

SCORE IN BRIEF

WEST INDIES 13 forww 0 trail SRI LANKA 169 (Thirimanne 70, Dickwella 32, Holder 5-27, Roach 3-47) by 156 runs. 

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