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Sri Lanka stay on top

Sri Lanka consolidated with bat and ball against Northamptonshire to take complete control on day two of their tour match at Wantage Road.

In the tourists' only warm-up fixture before next week's first Investec Test at Lord's, they piled up 558 for eight declared and then had their hosts 146 for five at stumps despite a belligerent 64 from Richard Levi.

Debutant seamer Chad Barrett and slow left-armer Graeme White both had wicketless centuries against their individual analyses as Sri Lanka's batsmen pressed on following Lahiru Thirimanne and Kaushal Silva's hundreds.

The hosts went steady with David Willey, on his return to bowling after injury, and the left-arm seamer did not add to the 12 overs he had got through on day one.

Silva retired on his overnight 152, and Dinesh Chandimal therefore joined in to do his Test hopes no harm with a breezy 47 in which he occasionally flirted with the fielders but struck nothing to hand.

Thirimanne ploughed on beyond 150 and had added another six runs, to go past his career best, when he missed a sweep at Matthew Spriegel and was bowled.

By then, the left-hander had hit 14 fours and two sixes from 221 balls.

Spriegel struck again with his off-breaks in his next over when Chandimal was also bowled sweeping.

Dilruwan Perera provided the impetus up to lunch, however, in another half-century stand with Test wicketkeeper Prasanna Jayawardene.

Perera took toll of White and then clubbed part-time off-spinner Rob Keogh for six-four-six in successive balls to hurry to his 63-ball fifty in early afternoon.

But in Keogh's next over, Jayawardene mistimed a sweep and was very well caught by Levi. Then six runs and four balls later, Perera holed out at deep midwicket for 59 off Steven Crook, who took 3-98.

When the tourists finally declared, James Kettleborough's long wait for his maiden first-class innings ended in instant disappointment - because he made a golden duck, lbw to left-armer Chanaka Welegedara.

Captain Stephen Peters also succumbed early, caught behind off Nuwan Pradeep.

But Levi announced himself with a flurry of boundaries and, after hitting three more in Perera's first over, reached 50 from only 40 balls.

Kyle Coetzer joined the counter-attack in a partnership of 65 in just 10 overs, until Dhammika Prasad had him caught and bowled and then shifted Levi too.

Ben Duckett was bowled, pushing across line and tide at a Perera off-break - but Spriegel and Keogh dug in until stumps.

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