[QODLink]
Cricket
Swann spins England into action
After a poor start from England's batsmen, Graeme Swann works his magic with ball to put team back into contention.
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2012 18:44
Sri Lanka looked to be heading for victory against England but Swann has helped to turn things around  [AFP]

Offspinner Graeme Swann took 4-28 in leading England's fightback to restrict Sri Lanka's second innings to 84-5 and a 209-run lead after two days of the first Test on Tuesday.

England conceded a 125-run first-innings lead to Sri Lanka.

Opener Lahiru Thirimanne and senior batsmen Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene and Thilan Samaraweera were all dismissed within 31 overs, leaving Sri Lanka 72-5.

Earlier, spinner Rangana Herath took 6-74 to end England's first innings for 193 in reply to Sri Lanka's 318.

A total of 17 wickets fell during the second day's play, 12 of which to spinners as the pitch at Galle International Stadium offered sharp turn and bounce.

"Disappointing not to back up our bowlers, again they've been outstanding for a fourth Test match this winter"

Ian Bell

Jayawardene said his team will be comfortable defending a total of at least 250, but that England's batsmen were better than what they showed on the field on Tuesday.

"They are a quality batting unit, they've got about six or seven good batters. We need not be complacent just because they got bowled out in the first innings, we have to do the hard work tomorrow with the bat and if we get to bowl as well the same stuff.''

"It's not going to just happen for us, it will be a tough Test match to win from now on,'' said Jayawardene.

Praising Herath for his bowling, Jayawardene said the left-armer has done well in leading a less fancied spin attack following the retirement of ace offspin bowler Muttiah Muralitharan.

Bell was disappointed that England's batsmen failed again and insisted they are working hard on improving playing on spin-friendly pitches on the subcontinent.

"Yes. It's a real shame, it's not through a lack of effort. Disappointing not to back up our bowlers, again they've been outstanding for a fourth Test match this winter.''

"We know that we have to get better playing in the subcontinent. It's a long-term goal and it's not going to happen overnight, we are working as hard as we can,'' Bell said.

Source:
AP
Topics in this article
People
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
Featured
Booming global trade in 50-million-year-old amber stones is lucrative, controversial, and extremely dangerous.
Legendary Native-American High Bird was trained in ancient warrior traditions, which he employed in World War II.
Hounded opposition figure says he's hoping for the best at sodomy appeal but prepared to return to prison.
Fears of rising Islamophobia and racial profiling after two soldiers killed in separate incidents.
Group's culture of summary justice is back in Northern Ireland's spotlight after new sexual assault accusations.