Moving On

For the past few days I've been preparing for a short trip to New York - I leave in about an hour - so I didn't see very much of the last couple of days of the Kandy Test. Ultimately Sri Lanka were worthy winners, and, unusually, they didn't rely completely on Murali on the final day. Although, when I left my house an hour after lunch, the TMS commentators were talking about his longest spells without a wicket. When I returned nearly five hours later he'd all but wrapped up the match by removing Matt Prior and Ian Bell, England's points of greatest resistance, with the new ball. Asad Rauf (whose appalling triggering of Sidebottom marred what was otherwise a good performance) and Lasith Malinga did the rest.

Having made the running so well on the first day England must be disappointed by their defeat, no matter how close they got to getting away with it. There are problems with the attack - Harmison or Broad for Anderson looks likely for Colombo - and in the field, and there were a few soft dismissals around, not least Collingwood's on the last day, although he can be allowed the odd one as he normally sells his wicket so dearly. As now seems customary, Bell was excellent in both innings, but he still needs to go on and turn his regular fifties into hundreds if he's going to fulfil his huge potential. I think it'll come.

As for Sri Lanka it's hard to look past Kumar Sangakkara, now unquestionably one of the world's greatest batsmen. This typically outstanding piece by Andrew Miller sums up where he's at just now.

So, the players go to Colombo and I go to the USA.

See you next week, when I'll try not to attempt to give my views on a game I haven't seen at all.

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