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Rain hampers New Zealand push for victory

Sri Lanka ends fourth day of Dunedin Test at 109/3, still 296 away from what would be an epic win

Rain hampers New Zealand push for victory - Cricket News
Tim Southee took two wickets as New Zealand tightened the screws on Sri Lanka on the fourth day of the first Test between the two teams on Sunday (December 13), but rain threatened to derail its victory march. 
 
Brendon McCullum set the stage for a tantalising conclusion at Dunedin's University Oval with a declaration that offered Sri Lanka more than five sessions to reach a 405-run target. But Sri Lanka’s response was disrupted by three stoppages as southerly squalls swept across the ground. Further showers are forecast for the final day. 
 
At stumps on the fourth day, with an hour's play lost because of the weather, Sri Lanka was 109 for 3, requiring a further 296 runs to pull off an epic victory. Dinesh Chandimal was not out on 31 and Angelo Mathews was yet to face a ball.
  
McCullum declared New Zealand's second innings at 267 for 3 to go with its 137-run first-innings advantage. 
 
Dimuth Karunaratne and Kusal Mendis, the openers, set about building a foundation reaching 54 by the 27th over when New Zealand struck twice. Southee had Karunaratne, Sri Lanka's top scorer in the first innings, caught behind for 29, and, ten runs later, Udara Jayasundera, the debutant, fell to Neil Wagner.
 
Mendis, in only his second Test, persevered for 150 deliveries and benefited from dropped catches on 13 and 25 before he was caught behind off Southee for 46 with the total on 109.
 
Before Mendis’s replacement, Mathews, could reach the crease, a hailstorm brought play to a halt for the third and final time. 

In the morning, after New Zealand resumed the day at 171 for 1, McCullum called an end to the innings after he belted his second six to equal the world record for the number of sixes hit in Tests. It took his overall tally to 100, joining Adam Gilchrist as the most prolific boundary busters in Test history. 
 
McCullum was 17 not out when he declared, with Tom Latham unbeaten on 109, having notched up his third Test century. Kane Williamson, who reached his half-century with the second ball of the morning, was dismissed for 71 earlier on.  It was the 20th time he had passed 50 in all forms of international cricket this year including eight times in Tests.

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