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12-Sep-2011 10:59:00 GMT
Sri Lanka v Australia, 2nd Test, Pallekele, 5th day

Rain Helps Sri Lanka Secure Draw

Kandy: Australia and Sri Lanka have played out a drawn second Test after rain cut short the match in the afternoon session on day five in Kandy on Monday.

Sri Lanka reached 6-317, a lead of 80 runs, when inclement weather again forced the players off after the first session of the day was also interrupted.

Ryan Harris (3-54) was the pick of the bowlers as the tourists closed in on a series win, but a match severely hampered by rain was called off after just 35.3 overs were bowled on the final day when the weather struck and persisted.

Australian veteran Mike Hussey (142, 1-0 and 1-2) collected player of the match honours.

The tourists began their charge at victory as they capitalised on the second new ball just three overs in, with Harris breaking the 101-run stand between Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene.

The paceman produced an out-swinger that Sangakkara (69) edged to Michael Clarke, who took a comfortable catch at second slip.

The same Australian pair should have combined just three balls later, but Clarke put down the chance offered by new man Thilan Samaraweera.

Samaraweera pushed at one outside off stump and the Australian captain dropped the catch after getting two hands to it.

Sri Lanka took the lead in the match soon after before Jayawardene (51) was sent packing following a stunning catch from Clarke.

Jayawardene opened the face to a Copeland delivery and Clarke dived to his left to take a sensational catch down low.

The gun Sri Lankan batsman stood his ground, protesting his edge had fallen short, before the third umpire confirmed his dismissal.

Play was disrupted by rain just after the drinks break with players returning to the field barely 10 minutes later.

It ended up being for just one ball, before they were again forced off due to the inclement weather.

Only four overs were lost from the delay and Sri Lanka made a solid start after an early lunch break, before Harris took the scalp of Prasanna Jayawardene (21).

After a superb over, the wicketkeeper edged a regulation catch to Brad Haddin behind the stumps.

Sri Lanka's run rate continued to stagnate as they looked to survive and it was Shane Watson (1-43) who got the big wicket of Samaraweera (43).

Haddin collected his third catch of the innings after Samaraweera tried to cut a delivery that was too close to his body.

Angelo Mathews (11) and Suraj Randiv (four) survived five overs before the weather hit again, this time persisting before the game was officially called off.

The third and final Test of the series, which Australia leads 1-0, starts in Colombo on Friday.

Brief scores
Sri Lanka
174 (Mathews 58, Harris 3-38) and 317 for 6 (Sangakkara 69, Paranavitana 55, M Jayawardene 51, Harris 3-54)
Australia 411 (Hussey 142, Marsh 141, Randiv 3-103)
Results Match drawn
MOM Miachel Hussey (Australia)

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