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Last Updated: Thursday, 5 July 2007, 11:11 GMT 12:11 UK
Sri Lanka crush brave Bangladesh
Second Test, Colombo: Sri Lanka 451-6d bt Bangladesh 62 & 299 by an innings and 90 runs

Bangladesh captain Mohammad Ashraful in action on day three in Colombo
Captain Ashraful ran out of partners with his score on 129

The highest partnership in Bangladesh's Test history was not enough to save them from defeat by an innings and 90 runs against Sri Lanka in Colombo.

Captain Mohammad Ashraful put on 191 with 18-year-old Mushfiqur Rahim put on 191 before Rahim fell to spin bowler Muttiah Muralitharan for 80.

Once Rahim had gone Bangladesh's last four wickets fell quickly and they were all out for 299.

Ashraful ended 129 not out as Sri Lanka took a 2-0 lead in the series.

The match followed a near identical course to the opening Test, which Sri Lanka won by an innings and 234 innings, with Bangladesh dismissed cheaply in their first innings and then making a fight of it in the second.

On this occasion, however, they were unable to extend the game into a fourth day.

"We just have to bat better in the first innings and get a big score," Ashraful said afterwards.

"It was a great partnership with Mushfiqur and we showed that Bangladesh was up for the challenge. But we needed at least two other such big stands to save the game.

"The boys are trying hard to learn the art of playing Test cricket. We won't give up."

Bangladesh made a bad start to the morning session, losing Habibul Bashar for 12 after adding only nine runs to their overnight score of 69-4.

Chaminda Vaas runs out Shahadat Hossain
Chaminda Vaas runs out Shahadat Hossain to end the match

Bashar was bowled by paceman Dilhara Fernando, who has figures of 3-60, but Sri Lanka had to wait another 60 overs for their next success.

Ashraful and Rahim's partnership beat the previous best for Bangladesh, a stand of 187 by Bashar and Shariar Nafees against Australia in 2006.

But they were eventually seperated when Rahim gave a return catch to Murali, his only wicket of Bangladesh's second innings.

Ashraful went to his fourth Test century - and third against Sri Lanka - off 184 balls, a fine, disciplined effort by a 22-year-old in only his second game as skipper.

But Chaminda Vaas had Mohammad Sharif and Mashrafe bin Mortaza lbw with successive deliveries to reduce Bangladesh to 276-8 and the game ended in disarray for the tourists as Mohammad Rafique and last man Shahadat Hossain were run out.

"I can't praise the bowlers enough for toiling hard on a wicket that had nothing for them," Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene commented.

"Vaas is a top performer as is Murali, they are great at creating opportunities. It helps that we also have two bowlers in Malinga and Fernando who bowl consistently at 90 miles an hour."

Jayawardene also praised Kumar Sangakkara's unbeaten double century on the second day which set up their declaration and won him the Man of the Match award.

"Sangakkara really shored up the innings, although I was a bit disappointed that the other batsmen could not go on to get big scores."

Jayawardene praised Ashraful and Rahim for their fighting spirit, but added: "The rest of them should have batted around the captain as well.

"They are a young team and I'm pretty sure they will improve with time."



SEE ALSO
Sangakkara puts Tigers on brink
04 Jul 07 |  Cricket
Bayliss reveals Sri Lanka plans
04 Jul 07 |  Sri Lanka
Bangladesh slump to new Test low
03 Jul 07 |  Cricket
Bangladesh in Sri Lanka 2007
05 Jun 07 |  International Teams


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