Sri Lanka were yesterday five wickets away from a series win against Bangladesh after the tourists were restricted to 177 for five at stumps on day four of the second Test at Pallekele.
Chasing a daunting 437 to win, Bangladesh batsmen were troubled by Sri Lanka spinners Praveen Jayawickrama and Ramesh Mendis, who took the five wickets on a crumbling wicket.
Sri Lanka set Bangladesh a formidable target by declaring their second innings on 194 for nine. No team has reached such a large target in Test history.
The greatest run chase in the history of Test cricket is the 418 made by the West Indies against Australia in 2003 in Antigua.
The most successful run chase at Pallekele, a picturesque hill resort, is 382 by Pakistan in 2015.
Should Bangladesh succeed in forcing a draw with 150 overs left in the game, Sri Lanka risk falling to their lowest world ranking.
Bangladesh, who are down to their last recognized pair, need another 260 runs to win with one full day’s play left.
Sri Lanka declared their second innings after lunch on 194 for nine and Bangladesh lost three wickets in the afternoon session finishing on 111 for three at tea.
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