Alex Hales stands firm for England as Sri Lanka’s bowlers fight back

• Third Test, day three: England 416 and 109-4; Sri Lanka 288
• Alex Hales 41 not out at the close; Alastair Cook unable to open

On a sultry Saturday the Test match accelerated into life against most expectations. For two days the batsmen had generally held sway, but now the bowlers took over, which always adds spice to the contest.

Thirteen wickets fell in the day. Sri Lanka lost nine for 126 as the England pacemen found a consistent line as well as a flicker of movement. Thus England gained a first innings lead of 128, which would be extended to 237 by the close with six wickets remaining.

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