The last day of the test match between England Vs. Sri Lanka witnessed some extraordinary performances by the English men. It was one of the best test match endings and perhaps one of the best at Lord’s. To the sad luck of the English men, despite their outstanding performances, the match was drawn.
The day’s play started with England’s overnight score at 267 for the loss of 8 wickets. Ballance was unbeaten at 104. The English team declared with that score and Sri Lanka had to score 389 runs in the final day to ensure victory. It was a brilliant start to the England bowling and they managed to keep things tight. Finally they got their prize in the 14th over of the game. Broad took the wicket of Karunaratne and Sri Lanka lost the first wicket at a score of 25 runs on the board. Then Kaushal Silva and Kumar Sangakkara steadied the Lankan innings and they were playing the English bowlers quite well and on account of their great partnership, Sri Lanka did not lose any wicket till lunch and were 99 for the loss of 1 wicket at lunch.
The second session of the day started with much excitement as we were heading towards a nail biting finish to the game. England brought back things in their side when they took the wicket of Silva. Chris Jordan provided the breakthrough for the English men and thus Lankans lost their second wicket at a score of 123 runs. It was a stunning partnership and Silva played a fine innings of 53 runs. Mahela Jayawardena came in next and for yet another time, Jayawardena and Sangakkara looked to build up a solid partnership but this time, it did not last long. Jayawardena was dismissed by a fantastic delivery from Johnson and Sri Lanka were thus 3 down. Lahiru Thirmanne came in next and after few overs, it was tea. Sri Lanka were 164 for the loss of 3 wickets at that time.
The last session of the match was expected to have some sorts of drama but we were heading towards a draw. But things got interesting for the English men as they took two wickets in quick succession and that too of dangerous looking Sangakkara and Thirmanne. Sangakkara scored 61 runs off 168 balls and Thirmanne scored 2 runs. Both the wickets were struck by Jimmy Anderson. Things were looking slightly in favour of the English men as they had to clinch another 5 wickets with more than 30 overs remaining in the match and with tail enders to follow. For another time, 3 consecutive wickets fell for Sri Lanka in a matter of few runs and few overs and they were 8 down at a score of 201 runs. Both Angelo Mathews and Prasanna Jayawardena were dismissed and the tail enders were on at the crease. Though, when the 8th wicket fell, it was the 87th over of the innings and all Sri Lanka needed to do was to defend 3 more overs to save the test and England needed to clinch 2 tail enders to seal victory at their end.
Rangana Herath and Shaminda Eranga managed to somehow defend 2 overs and 2 wickets were needed off the last over. The tragic hero for England, Stuart Broad came in to bowl the last over. He made things interesting by taking the wicket of Herath in the very first delivery. England were 1 wicket away from victory and Sri Lanka were 5 balls away to save the test. Nuwan Pradeep came in and all eyes were on this man. This man did a stunning job by defending 5 consecutive balls and thus saved the test for his country.
It will go down as one of the most thrilling tests ever played. It is a sad part for England though. Even after bowling incredibly well, they missed the victory by a very narrow margin. On the part of Sri Lanka, they somehow managed to save the test match and they too played well in both the innings and both teams deserved to win and draw was somehow the perfect result for this match.