Colombo: Former captains Tillakaratne Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara both hit hundreds to help Sri Lanka to 278 for 5 at stumps on day four of the second Test against Pakistan at Sinhalese Sports Club on Tuesday.
Resuming from an overnight score of 70 for 1, the Sri Lanka pair added 225 runs for the second wicket in reply to Pakistan's first innings score of 551 for 6 declared. After the stand was broken, there was a rush of wickets as Sri Lanka lost four for just 42 runs. It still trails Pakistan by 273 runs.
Dilshan required 72 balls for his half-century and was quiet in the first two sessions of the day as he failed to hit a boundary for 122 deliveries. However, he reached his 14th Test hundred by coming down the track to Saeed Ajmal and depositing the offspinner over midwicket for six.
Sangakkara followed a short time later with a single completing his 30th Test hundred and the ninth against Pakistan, most by any batsman as he surpassed compatriot Aravind de Silva's record of eight. During his knock, Dilshan also went on to become the eighth Sri Lanka batsman to reach 5,000 Test runs.
Their second-wicket stand was broken when Junaid Khan trapped Dilshan leg before for 121. Junaid then spiced things up by trapping captain Mahela Jayawardene lbw for a duck, his first at the SSC in 37 innings.
Ajmal then removed Thilan Samaraweera when the batsman was ruled lbw, becoming the third Sri Lankan to be dismissed without scoring in the innings. Night watchman Suraj Randiv was then ruled out lbw to Ajmal in the last over of the day.
The first three days of the game had been severely affected by bad weather with four sessions lost to rain. Sangakkara became only the fourth man in the history of the game to score 2,000 Test runs at one ground when he pushed Khan for a single in the morning. He joined captain Jayawardene (SSC), South Africa's Jacques Kallis (Newlands) and England's Graeme Gooch (Lord's) as the fourth batsman to score more than 2,000 runs at one venue.
Jayawardene has also managed the feat at Galle. In Junaid's next over, Sangakkara turned the left-arm seamer to the leg side to become the highest run scorer against Pakistan breaking Sunil Gavaskar's record of 2,089 runs. While the former India captain had required 41 innings and 24 games to set the record, the Sri Lankan achieved the feat during his 15th Test in 28 innings.