AFP: New Zealand maintained their dominance over Sri Lanka in the second Test yesterday, enforcing a follow-on and setting up the likelihood of a series clean sweep with two days to play. The tourists reached 113-2 in their second innings at stumps on day three but still trailed by 303 runs at Wellington’s Basin Reserve. They need a massive turnaround to avoid defeat after being skittled out for 164 in their first innings in response to the Black Caps’ 580-4 declared.
Starting off with a deficit of 416 runs, they showed more fight in their second turn at bat. Captain Dimuth Karunaratne posted his second half-century of the day before being dismissed by counterpart Tim Southee for 51, caught in the deep after fellow-opener Oshada Fernando had been removed cheaply. Kusal Mendis was at the crease on 50 and Angelo Mathews unbeaten on one off 40 balls, with the pair seeing off the last 11.5 overs in stoic fashion. Sri Lanka’s best hopes of saving the Test could rest with the weather. Rain is forecast for the final day, meaning they could force a stalemate if they can successfully bat through yesterday, when cold, blustery conditions are expected and may make life uncomfortable for New Zealand in the field.