Atapattu century puts Sri Lanka in control

Marvan Atapattu hit his fifth Test century to put Sri Lanka in command of the second Test against South Africa hereyesterday.

Marvan Atapattu hit his fifth Test century to put Sri Lanka in command of the second Test against South Africa hereyesterday.

The Sri Lanka vice-captain was unbeaten on 107 as his side finished the second day strongly placed at 260 for 4 in reply to South Africa's 253.

The final session was dominated by Atapattu, who completed his century by pulling a short delivery from Nantie Hayward through mid-wicket for his 12th boundary. He took 264 balls over his hundred.

With Arjuna Ranatunga - making his final appearance here - Atapattu added 78 in an unbroken fifth-wicket partnership. Ranatunga was undefeated on 34, scored off 52 balls with a six and five fours along the way.

Russel Arnold lost his wicket at 28 after a misunderstanding with Atapattu, and Kumar Sangakkara was also run out for 24 when he backed up too far and failed to beat Neil McKenzie's throw from cover point.

The third wicket to fall was that of Mahela Jayawardene, who edged a catch to Daryll Cullinan at slip off Nicky Boje. Sanath Jayasuriya then went for 28 when he edged Hayward to Jacques Kallis.

Second day; Sri Lanka won toss

SOUTH AFRICA - First Innings 253 (L Klusener 118 no, M V Boucher 60)

SRI LANKA - First Innings (Overnight: 15-0)

M S Atapattu not out 107 S T Jayasuriya c Kallis b Hayward 28 R P Arnold run out 28 D P M Jayawardene c Cullinan b Boje 18 K Sangakkara run out 24 A Ranatunga not out 34 Extras (b5 lb10 nb6) 21 Total (for 4, 86.2 overs) 260

Fall: 1-53, 2-109, 3-142, 4-182.

To Bat: H D P K Dharmasena, U D U Chandana, W P U J C Vaas, M Muralitharan, D N T Zoysa.

Bowling: Pollock 17.2-3-64-0; Hayward 16-5-41-1; Kallis 11-4-18-0; Boje 15-2-50-1; Klusener 11-2-21-0; Adams 14-1-44-0; Cullinan 2-0-7-0.

Umpires: D J Harper (Aus) and G Silva (S Lanka).

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