Karunaratne century gives Sri Lanka big lead

Dimuth Karunaratne scored a century as Sri Lanka extended its lead over Zimbabwe to 411 runs before rain and bad light ended play on the fourth day of the first Test on Tuesday.

Dimuth Karunaratne scored his fourth Test century.   -  AP

Dimuth Karunaratne scored a century as Sri Lanka extended its lead over Zimbabwe to 411 runs before rain and bad light ended play on the fourth day of the first Test on Tuesday. Sri Lanka had moved on to 247 for six when play was called off around 15 minutes ahead of the scheduled close.

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Karunaratne, the most experienced batsman in an injury-hampered line-up, survived an early drop to score 110 before being caught and bowled by Chris Mpofu just before tea.

His 94-run partnership with Dhananjaya de Silva for the fifth wicket lifted Sri Lanka from 117 for 4. De Silva was the last Sri Lankan wicket to fall, caught for 64 off the bowling of debutant Carl Mumba who has taken 4 for 50 in the second innings.

Sri Lanka is likely to declare early on the final day to give itself time to bowl the host out. Zimbabwe scored 373 in its first innings and will have high hopes of surviving the day and securing a draw in its 100th Test since its first against India in 1992.

The African side has lost its last six Tests.