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Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Lanka loses 2nd Test too at Galle ... what caused interruption on day 3 ??

At Galle, in the First test -  Dom Bess and Jack Leach's combined match haul of 14 for 307 ensured an emphatic win for the visitors even as Lankans were roasted for their poor performance in the 1st innings.  Now in the Second test also at Galle, Sri Lanka secured themselves a useful 37-run lead on first innings early on the fourth day.  Jack Leach was the last man out for England, lbw to Dilruwan Perera for 1 on the 11th ball of the morning, having added five runs with James Anderson, whose reverse sweep to the boundary off Lasith Embuldeniya left him not out on 4.

BUT the day went horribly wrong for Lankans as they were bundled out for 126 with spinner - Lasith Embuldeniya  becoming the top scorer with 40.  On an enthralling day when 15 wickets fell, England's frontline spinners came to the fore and opener Dom Sibley scored an unbeaten half-century to help defeat Sri Lanka by six wickets with a day to spare and win the series 2-0.  Lasith Embuldeniya followed his 7 for 137 in the first innings with 3 for 73 to take 10 for the match - not to mention top-scoring in Sri Lanka's second innings - but it was not enough as Sibley, in need of runs, played exactly the innings that was required of him: patient, productive and at times fortunate.  Going into the final session on day four, the tourists still needed 118 runs and they got there via an unbroken 75-run partnership between Sibley and Jos Buttler, who followed his 55 in the first innings, where he played a fine supporting role as Joe Root scored his wonderful 186, with 46 not out. Sibley hit the winning run to end unbeaten on 56. 

After long time, Test Cricket is to return to Chepauk in Feb 2021 with England set to play 2 tests here but .. .. .. there would be no spectators !  .. have seen that in earlier times, during matches, Chepauk turns a virtual fortress … spectators would be  body-frisked and there would be so many items which are not allowed – and that includes whistles, banners, sticks, water bottles, cigarettes  and more.  In olden days, they used to check only cool drink bottles [of colas] checking whether they are mixed with alcohol… for IPL matches, even a water bottle was not allowed ~ one had to buy things at extraordinary rates…. Long ago, fans would run on to the ground to greet their stars when they hit a century – now you have high fences and watchguards… some of the stands are protected with net too… !!   

Interruptions in a Cricket match can arise due to host of reasons – ranging from – wet spots, bees swarming, ball getting out of shape, players injury, rain, bad light and even lightning ....  spectator running into the file (streaking included !) – and animal invasion too.....(this post is on one such intriguing animal interruption !) .. at Chepauk – have seen dogs running helter-skelter – entire stadium would laugh when the marker could not catch the stray dog – with play suspended briefly.  I had posted on a strange incident in Nov 2012 when England toured India and were playing a match for acclamitising  - the stoppage was due to simian invasion - a langur monkey,  running across the pitch, hampering the game and making its way off being attracted  by another female monkey on the boundary edge.


In 2014, a spectator smuggled a pig into the first day of the Ashes cricket Test between Australia and England; and was in news as he was charged with  animal cruelty. Security guards spotted the pig wrapped in a towel and being carried in a baby harness  !! A 33-year-old Australian man was arrested and charged and made to appear in the Brisbane Magistrates Court. More than the carriage, it appears to be all about cruelty to the animal as according to  spokesperson of  Brisbane chapter of the Royal Society the pig was "really stressed out and dehydrated." The incident was a reprise of the 1982-83 Ashes Test at the Gabba where a group of vets brought in an anaesthetised pig that had "Beefy", for Ian Botham, written on one side and "Eddie", for Hemmings, on the other and let it on to the pitch.

This is one is not all that serious – as ICC posted a tweet stating “ICC is reviewing reports that Sri Lanka used an extra fielder against England in Galle” !!

During the third day of the second Test of the ongoing England’s tour of Sri Lanka in Galle, a monitor lizard became the centre of attraction after it was spotted near the boundary rope.  It all happened in the 64th over of the English innings when a cameraman witnessed the dangerous reptile making its presence felt on the ground at the Galle International Stadium. While there was no untoward incident due to the monitor lizard, it ended up alluring hilarious reactions across social media platforms.

Monitor lizards (உடும்பு)  are large lizards in the genus Varanus. They are native to Africa, Asia, and Oceania, but are now found also in the Americas as an invasive species. About 80 species are recognized.  They have  have long necks, powerful tails and claws, and well-developed limbs.   While most monitor lizards are carnivorous, eating eggs, smaller reptiles, fish, birds, insects, and small mammals, some also eat fruit and vegetation, depending on where they live.  It is believed that their grasp is so strong that they were used in earlier times for invading forts and climbing hills !! 

உடும்பு என்பது பல்லி வகையைச் சேர்ந்த பேரினம் ஆகும். இவை பொதுவாகப் பெரிய ஊர்வன உயிரினங்களாகும், எனினும் 20 சென்டிமீட்டரளவில் நீளம் கொண்டுள்ள இனங்களும் உண்டு. இவை நீண்ட கழுத்து, வலுமிக்க வால் மற்றும் நகங்கள் மேலும் நன்கு வளர்ந்த மூட்டுகள் ஆகியவற்றைக் கொண்டுள்ளன.  

Ever seen ‘Udumbu’ at arm’s length.. .. .. Monitor lizard, touted for its unrelenting grip is the common name of several large lizard species, comprising the genus Varanus. About 30 years ago, in Triplicane, in the morning around 09.00 am, I stood close to the shop entrance, as my friend opened his Watch repair shop in TP Kovil Street.  He hastily retreated from part open door, then before I could realize, a solid black 2 to 3 footer jumped and went into hiding inside the shop’s Name  board.  Later it was revealed that the man had bought Udumbu [for obvious reasons !] and had tied it to the leg of a wooden stool, planning everything for the next day…. In the night, the lizard had shrunk itself with ease, loosened the grip, got freed and was perhaps was waiting for the door to open ! 

With regards – S.Sampathkumar

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