August 5, 2017, 2:16 pm
India enforced the follow-on after ace spinner Ravichandran Ashwin claimed five wickets to help dismiss Sri Lanka for 183 on the third day of the second Test in Colombo on Saturday.
The hosts, who resumed the day on 50-2, succumbed to India’s spin assault in the morning session, conceding a first-innings lead of 439 runs. Sri Lanka will resume their second innings after lunch.
Left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja, who took two wickets, drew first blood by sending back skipper Dinesh Chandimal for 10. Soon overnight batsman Kusal Mendis fell for 24 off paceman Umesh Yadav.
Ashwin, who had removed the Sri Lankan openers at the end of day two, then turned on the heat to rattle the Sri Lankan middle and lower order at the Sinhalese Sports Club Ground.
The lanky off-spinner, who registered his 26th five-wicket haul in his 51st Test, got crucial wickets including that of former captain Angelo Mathews for 26 and Dilruwan Perera for 25.
The spinners also got adequate support from pacemen Mohammed Shami and Yadav who shared three wickets between them.
Shami got the all-important wicket of wicketkeeper-batsman Niroshan Dickwella, who top-scored with a defiant 51 off 48 deliveries.
Earlier the Virat Kohli-led India had posted a formidable 622-9 declared in their first innings after winning the toss and electing to bat first.
A win will help India clinch the three-match Test series 2-0. The hosts must at least draw to keep their hopes alive.