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Hales, Bairstow lead solid England fightback

Debutant Shanaka picks up three quick wickets before hosts recover to reach 171 for 5 on rain-hit opening day

Hales, Bairstow lead solid England fightback
 - Cricket News
Hales completed a watchful 112-ball half-century when he drove Dushmantha Chameera behind point for his 10th four.
Dasun Shanaka, the Sri Lankan all-rounder, turned in a memorable opening day in office as Test cricketer, ripping the heart out of England’s top-order, before Alex Hales and Jonathan Bairstow joined hands in an innings-retrieving stand at Headingley on Thursday (May 19).
 
Shanaka swung out Alastair Cook, Nick Compton and Joe Root in an impressive burst before lunch, and Shaminda Eranga and Nuwan Pradeep then picked up a wicket each on resumption as England slumped to 83 for 5 on day one of the opening Test match.
 
Hales and Bairstow, however engaged themselves in an unbroken sixth-wicket association of 88 to help England move to 171 for 5 when rain prevented any play after tea and forced an early close to an intriguing day in the 75th Test at Headingley.
 
Hales, under pressure for his place after modest outings in the series win in South Africa, was a Test-best 71 not out with Bairstow, on his Yorkshire home ground, unbeaten on 54.

Angelo Mathews had no hesitation in sticking England in on winning the toss in overcast conditions not dissimilar of those at Headingley two years ago, when his side won the second Test to seal their first series win in England.


 
Cook, who needed just 36 runs to become the first Englishman to score 10,000 in Tests, got off the mark with a trademark clip off his legs for four. But the skipper was caught behind for 16 going for a cover drive off a wide but full delivery from Shanaka.
 
Three deliveries later, in the same over, Shanaka had Compton caught low at first slip by Lahiru Thirimanne for no score.
 
Joe Root, England's recently crowned player of the year in all formats, also fell for a duck to Shanaka as he edged to gully. Shanaka had taken three wickets for one run in eight balls.
 
England were 57 for 3 at lunch with Hales on 38 not out and debutant James Vince yet to score. On resumption, Vince struck two fours -- a cover-drive and a straight drive -- but fell for nine when he nicked Eranga to gully. Ben Stokes hammered struck three fours but holed out tamely to mid-on off Pradeep.
 
Hales completed a watchful 112-ball half-century when he drove Dushmantha Chameera behind point for his 10th four as he put his natural flamboyance to bed and batted with the circumspection the situation demanded.
 
Bairstow was adjudged leg before for 41 but successfully reviewed the decision and soon afterwards lofted Rangana Herath, the left-arm spinner, for six.
 
Sri Lanka then reviewed a not out call in favour of Bairstow when Herath's lbw appeal was rejected, with replays again supporting the batsman.

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