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August 31, 2009

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Sri Lanka sweeps series with the Kiwis

DANIEL Vettori's 140 runs went in vain as Sri Lanka beat New Zealand by 96 runs in the second cricket test and swept the series 2-0 on the final day yesterday in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Spinner Rangana Herath took five wickets as the tourists, needing 494 to win, were bowled out for 397 shortly before tea.

The Black Caps entered Day 5 at a precarious 182-6, but Vettori and Jacob Oram delayed the inevitable with a 124-run partnership for the seventh wicket.

Vettori brought up his fourth test hundred and was out last with a career-best 140, improving on his previous best of 137 not out.

He was well caught by Herath off Muttiah Muralitharan after spending more than four hours at the crease, facing 189 balls.

"I think the key for us was to show a bit of fight, probably put up a performance that is related to our skill," Vettori said. "Today to score 400 in the fourth innings is pleasing but still disappointing. ... If we hadn't lost Jacob just before lunch it would have been an interesting next couple of sessions."

Tillakaratne Dilshan put the breaks on the Black Caps' fightback, snaring Oram for 56 runs in the first session caught by Kumar Sangakkara at extra-cover.

Oram faced 148 balls and hit five boundaries in brining up his sixth test half-century.

Sangakkara said his team hadn't performed to expectations despite the win.

"182-6 you expect to go out there and do better than we did," the Sri Lanka captain said, adding that his players hadn't fielded well and bowled wayward in the morning session.


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