Black Caps stumble against Sri Lankan spin before lunch in first Test

Black Caps stumble against Sri Lankan spin before lunch in first Test

What's certain is they won't underestimate the hosts, even though they are yet to emerge from their forever-rebuilding state, under another interim coach. Sri Lanka look to be in decent form and the team will be confident following their win against Bangladesh.

If New Zealand finish on a winning note against Sri Lanka in the first Test, they will briefly leapfrog India to the top spot in the Test rankings.

Looking at New Zealand, the team enters this match following a very successful World Cup campaign where they finished second. The Dimuth Karunaratne-led side will have the home condition on their side and would be hoping to make full use of it.

New Zealand began the session at 71 for 3 and in some trouble.

Sri Lanka were whitewashed by England in November a year ago.

What time does Sri Lanka vs New Zealand 1st Test match start? With spin being vital in this match, I see Sri Lanka being too good. Akila Danajaya and left-armer Lasith Embuldeniya were named for spin bowling duties. This will be his first outing in the longer format of the game since he remodelled his action earlier this year.

Left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel was instrumental in New Zealand's away series win against Pakistan previous year, and despite having just the five Tests under his belt, he impressed in the warm-up game, where he walked away with a five-for on the only day play was possible. Visiting spinners have also had a fair bit of success in Sri Lanka recently, and Patel and co. will have studied closely.

Chandimal was dropped for the tour of South Africa in February after overseeing two crushing Test defeats in Sri Lanka, which came after a winless tour of New Zealand and a 0-3 Test series loss to England at home.

Taylor's enterprise with the willow set the tone for New Zealand.

Still, Sri Lanka is always a tough prospect on its home pitches and Galle will likely assist the home team's spinners despite rain falling on the eve of the opening test on Tuesday.

Drying runs up may be especially vital in the first Test, if, as Karunaratne suspects, the pitch is more batting-friendly than it usually is in Galle. However, Taylor took the aggressive approach after the break and employed his tried and tested sweep alongside the loft and the short-arm pull to put Sri Lanka under pressure.



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