Asela Gunaratne is congratulated by his team-mates after his catch off Rangana Herath's bowling. © AFP

Asela Gunaratne is congratulated by his team-mates after his catch off Rangana Herath’s bowling. © AFP

Bangladesh slipped to 38 for 2 at lunch in a tricky chase of 191 after Rangana Herath struck twice in the fifth morning of the second Test in Colombo on Sunday (March 19).

The captain and left-arm spinner, celebrating his 39th birthday, varied his line and length to good effect to provide the first breakthrough with the wicket of Soumya Sarkar (10).

After being deceived by flight and sharp turn in the previous ball, Sarkar looked to step out and go big. But he got nowhere close to the pitch of the ball and skied a catch to mid off. The very next ball, Herath induced an outside edge from Imrul Kayes to first slip to send him back for a golden duck.

Tamim Iqbal (22) and Sabbir Rahman (6) then safely negotiated the period to the lunch break though the spinners maintained constant pressure.

Earlier Sri Lanka were bowled out for 319 after an 80-run partnership between Dilruwan Perera and Suranga Lakmal for the ninth wicket.

Perera, resuming on 26 from 126 balls, started opening up and looked for scoring opportunities from the onset. He brought up his fourth Test half-century off the 165th ball he faced.

Meanwhile, Lakmal extended his score from 14 to 42. He had a bit of luck going his way. A thick outside edge flew wide of second slip to the boundary, a few wafts outside off marginally missed the outside edge and he mistimed a shot straight up in the air but it fell in a vacant spot at deep midwicket.

The runs might have been fortuitous but they were crucial nonetheless, and Lakmal gained more control of his shots as the innings progressed.

The stand ended, ironically enough, due to a misfield, at short midwicket. The batsmen tried to sneak a quick single, but Subhasis Roy fired in a quick throw to find Perera (50) short of his crease.

Lakmal then looked to clear the man at long off but didn’t get the timing right, giving Shakib Al Hasan his fourth wicket. Shakib finished with figures of 4 for 74, while Mustafizur Rahman took 3 for 78.

Aside from Dimuth Karunaratne, who hit 126, Sri Lanka struggled in the second innings, with Perera the only batsman managing a half-century.