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Bairstow, Anderson put England in control

Batsman’s century drives England to 298, before bowler’s five-for dismisses Sri Lanka for 91 with visitor made to follow on

Bairstow, Anderson put England in control - Cricket News
A drop on 70 proved costly for Sri Lanka as Bairstow scored 140 to prop up England.

A majestic display of swing bowling from James Anderson gave him his best Test figures at Headingley and helped England enforce a follow on against Sri Lanka on the second day of the first Test on Friday (May 20).

Sri Lanka was bowled out for just 91 in 36.4 overs in response to England's first-innings 298, giving the home side an incredible lead of 207 runs. 

Anderson's previous Headingley best of 3 for 91 came against Sri Lanka two years ago and he was once again the chief tormenter. He finished the day with figures 5 for 16 in 11.4 overs, which included a spell of 4 for 1 in 29 balls. 

Stuart Broad, the No. 1 Test bowler in the International Cricket Council rankings, complemented Anderson beautifully, taking 4 for 21 as only Angelo Mathews (34), the Sri Lanka captain, and Lahiru Thirimanne (22) showed some resistance in typically overcast English conditions.

The other star of the day was Jonny Bairstow, who held five catches in addition to his masterful 140.

Sri Lanka reached one without loss off two balls in its second innings when bad light forced an early end to the day. Both batsmen, Dimuth Karunaratne and Kaushal Silva, were yet to get off the mark as that run had come off a leg-bye.

Before Anderson wreaked havoc, it was Broad who tore into Sri Lanka's top order, reducing it to 12 for 3. Bowling from round the wicket, he had Karunaratne out for a duck, edging behind. Kusal Mendis then followed in similar fashion, perishing for a duck too. In between those dismissals, Silva was caught behind off a sharply rising ball from Anderson for 11.


Mathews steadied the innings briefly, but was out lbw to Anderson. The wicket meant he went past Kapil Dev's tally of 434 Test wickers and into sixth place in the all-time wicket-takers’ list. Anderson had Sri Lanka in a vice-like grip as he dismissed Dusan Shanaka, the Test debutant and Rangana Herath, narrowly missing a hat-trick.

Broad then removed Dushmatha Chameera and Thirimanne, and Anderson returned to grab the last wicket of Eranga, caught down the legside by Bairstow.

England began the morning on 171 for 5, with Alex Hales and Bairstow unbeaten on 71 and 54 respectively. Bairstow could have very well been out for 70 -- half his final score -- but Nuwan Pradeep was left to rue dropping a caught and bowled chance off a checked drive.

Hales and Bairstow shared a sixth-wicket stand of 141, but there was no maiden Test ton for Hales as he holed out to Herath for 86.

An overthrow helped Bairstow reach his second Test century and first in England following his 150 not out against South Africa at Cape Town in January. The innings came to an end when he was dismissed by Chameera, but it was a knock worth its weight in gold coming in these conditions, as England's bowlers went on prove.

Click here to view the full scorecard.

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