Second Test between New Zealand and Sri Lanka: New Zealand Bowlers Easily Win, Finish Series Sweep

Second Test between New Zealand and Sri Lanka: New Zealand Bowlers Easily Win, Finish Series Sweep

New Zealand continued their domination over Sri Lanka in the second Test on Sunday, imposing a follow-on and setting up the potential of a series clean sweep with two days to go.

The visitors trailed Wellington's Basin Reserve by 303 runs despite reaching 113-2 in their second innings at day's end.

After being skittled out for 164 in their first innings in response to the Black Caps' 580-4 declared, they need a huge turnaround to win.

They had a 416 run disadvantage going into their second at-bat, but they came out fighting.

As opening partner Oshada Fernando was cheaply removed, captain Dimuth Karunaratne scored his second fifty-plus of the day before being bowled by Tim Southee for 51.

Kusal Mendis was on the crease with 50 and Angelo Mathews was undefeated on one off 40 balls. The partnership stoically survived the last 11.5 overs.

The visitors still have a long battle ahead of them to win the Test; their tenuous chance to even the two-match series was virtually lost by a string of wild strokes that ruined their first innings.

The final six Sri Lankan wickets fell for 50 runs in the span of 15.1 overs during a frantic second session, despite the pitch playing pretty true.

Just three hitters, including Karunaratne, the ninth man out for 89, reached double digits in the early innings.

When he and Dinesh Chandimal put up 80 for the fifth wicket after the loss of two wickets in the day's first half-hour left them to 34-4, the tenacious opener had seemed to be pulling the visitors out of a deep hole.

After sprinting down the track shortly after tea, Chandimal was eventually caught for 34 by Michael Bracewell, which precipitated the collapse.

Offspinner Bracewell finished with 3-50 after removing Dhananjaya de Silva in his subsequent over and dismissing Karunaratne when he shot out.

In addition to wicketkeeper Nishan Madushka, who scored 19 in his Test debut, pitcher Matt Henry collected 3-44.

The last two wickets, Asitha Fernando and Kasun Rajitha, both went for ducks, concluding Sri Lanka's innings with the sixth-lowest score ever played on New Zealand soil.

Even if that strategy failed less than a month ago when England forced the follow-on halfway through the second Test against the Black Caps at the Basin Reserve, Black Caps captain Southee had no qualms asking his opponents to bat again.

In the end, New Zealand prevailed, becoming just the fourth side in Tests to win after following-on.

The Black Caps are targeting their third Test victory in a row, after their thrilling two-wicket success against Sri Lanka in the first Test at Christchurch, which was secured on the last ball.