New Zealand's Brendon McCullum and Daniel Flynn run between
wickets during their partnership of 90. REUTERS/Dinuka
Sri Lanka spinner Rangana Herath continued his love
affair with the Galle International Cricket Stadium as he took
five for 65 to help dismiss New Zealand for 221 on the opening
day of the first Test.
The left-armer's effort was his fourth five-wicket haul in
eight matches at the venue and means 40 of his 159 Test
wickets have come there.
New Zealand struck back late on with Tim Southee dismissing
Sri Lanka debutant Dimuth Karunaratne leg-before wicket for
nought as the home side reached nine for one at close of
"I really like it (here in Galle)," Herath told reporters. "I
made my (test) debut here and most of the time I have done
well here in Galle.
"We've done well. If we can get runs tomorrow we are well
ahead in the game," he added.
Herath was the man who dismissed New Zealand's top-scorers,
Brendon McCullum (68) and Daniel Flynn (53), and was well
supported by seam bowlers Shaminda Eranga (three for 51) and
Nuwan Kulasekara (two for 31).
McCullum was dismissed the ball after hitting Herath straight
for six, beaten and bowled by a ball which turned and beat
the outside edge, while Flynn was caught behind by
wicketkeeper Prasanna Jayawardena in the over before tea.
McCullum, who opened the innings, hit eight fours and two
sixes in an innings which mixed positivity with watchful
defence while Flynn passed a half-century for the first time
in Tests in more than three years, facing 152 balls and
hitting seven fours.
"It was not the batting performance we were after as you win
the toss in Galle and hope to get more than 400," McCullum
"The pitch was good. It turned more than you might expect on
day one but you also expect that in the sub-continent.
"We have to look forward to tomorrow and it is a big first
hour for us to try and expose the Sri Lanka middle-order. If
we can then that will make today's disappointment easier to
New Zealand, looking to make amends after a 3-0 defeat in a
rain-scarred one-day series, started well with captain Ross
Taylor winning the toss in hot and sunny conditions and on a
pitch expected to be at its best on the first three days.
But they quickly stumbled to 40 for three as Eranga dismissed
Martin Guptill (11) and Kane Williamson (0) in the space of
three balls, both to catches behind the wicket, while Taylor
(9) was bowled through the gate playing a loose drive at
McCullum and Flynn resurrected the innings with a stand of 90
in 33 overs either side of lunch but when both men, together
with James Franklin - who laboured for 43 balls for three
before Herath trapped him leg before wicket - fell in the
afternoon session, the writing was on the wall for the
The disappointing total continued New Zealand's struggles
with the bat during this calendar year as they have now
posted only three scores of 300 or more in nine Tests in
The second match of the series takes place in Colombo
starting on 25 November.