Angelo Mathews and Kusal Mendis produced a masterclass of resistance on the fourth day of the first Test against New Zealand to keep Sri Lanka’s hopes alive at Wellington.
The pair resumed battle on 20-3 in the morning and batted together throughout the day in an incredible feat of attrition, Mendis ending undefeated on 116 off 287 balls (12×4), with Mathews not out on 117 off 293 balls (11×4). It was only the 22nd time in Test history that no wickets have fallen in an entire day of Test cricket (see bottom of page).
The pair spent 577 balls together in building their fourth-wicket partnership of 246 which, although it is their best stand against New Zealand, remains a long way from entering into Sri Lanka’s Test record books for best partnerships.
Sri Lanka’s top Test partnerships for each wicket
|1st||335||MS Atapattu, ST Jayasuriya||Pakistan||Kandy||2000|
|2nd||576||ST Jayasuriya, RS Mahanama||India||Colombo (RPS)||1997|
|3rd||624||KC Sangakkara, DPMD Jayawardene||South Africa||Colombo (SSC)||2006|
|4th||437||DPMD Jayawardene, TT Samaraweera||Pakistan||Karachi||2009|
|5th||280||TT Samaraweera, TM Dilshan||Bangladesh||Colombo (PSS)||2005|
|6th||351||DPMD Jayawardene, HAPW Jayawardene||India||Ahmedabad||2009|
|7th||223*||HAPW Jayawardene, WPUJC Vaas||Bangladesh||Colombo (SSC)||2007|
|8th||170||DPMD Jayawardene, WPUJC Vaas||South Africa||Galle||2004|
|9th||118||TT Samaraweer, BAW Mendis||India||Colombo (PSS)||2010|
|10th||79||WPUJC Vaas, M Muralitharan||Australia||Kandy||2004|
Mathews celebrated his ton with a series of on-field push-ups which he followed with a display of flexing his biceps to let fans and selectors know that he still has the appetite to do his duty for his country. Mathews has now scored nine tons in his 78 Test matches (141 innings) and will be eyeing his Test-best score of 160, which he registered against England in 2014. That innings formed part of his best year in Test cricket, scoring 1,160 Test runs in 20 innings.
Mendis registered his sixth Test ton in his 64th innings, which was his third Test ton in 2018, following his 102 against the West Indies in June and his Test best of 196 against Bangladesh in January.
Tim Southee ended with 2-36 off 20 overs (econ 1.80), with Trent Boult, the other wicket-taker from the previous day, ending with figures of 1-50 (econ 2.38). Ajaz Patel toiled manfully without reward, his 26 overs costing just 46 runs at a rate of 1.76 to the over.
Sri Lanka have a lot of work yet to do to save the Test as they head into the final day still 37 runs behind New Zealand and with seven wickets still in hand, although the prospects of rain tomorrow could play into their hands.
Photo: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images
NO WICKETS FALLING IN AN ENTIRE DAY OF TEST CRICKET
|Australia v England||3||283||Melbourne||1st Jan 1925|
|West Indies v Australia||4||307||Bridgetown||14th May 1955|
|India v New Zealand||1||234||Chennai||6th Jan 1956|
|West Indies v Pakistan||3||357||Kingston||26th Feb 1958|
|West Indies v England||5||207||Bridgetown||6th Jan 1960|
|West Indies v Australia||1||263||Bridgetown||5th May 1965|
|West Indies v New Zealand||3||218||Georgetown||6th April 1972|
|India v West Indies||4||306||Kolkata||29th Dec 1978|
|India v England||2||217||Chennai||13th Jan 1982|
|Sri Lanka v Pakistan||5||240||Colombo (PSS)||22nd March 1986|
|India v Australia||4||235||Mumbai||15th Oct 1986|
|England v Australia||1||301||Nottingham||10th August 1989|
|South Africa v Australia||3||288||Johannesburg||28th Feb 1997|
|Sri Lanka v India||3||283||Colombo (RPS)||4th August 1997|
|Sri Lanka v India||4||265||Colombo (RPS)||5th August 1997|
|West Indies v Australia||2||340||Kingston||13th March 1999|
|India v Australia||4||335||Kolkata||11th March 2001|
|Bangladesh v South Africa||2||280||Chittagong (MAA)||24th April 2003|
|Sri Lanka v South Africa||2||357||Colombo (SSC)||27th July 2006|
|Bangladesh v India||1||326||Dhaka (SBNS)||25th May 2007|
|Bangladesh v South Africa||1||405||Chittagong (CDS)||29th Feb 2008|
|New Zealand v Sri Lanka||4||239||Wellington||18th Dec 2018|