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Since 1st March, 1999
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Giles puts England on track
- 1st test - Lankans lose 2 late wickets on rain-marred opening day

Galle: England spinner Ashley Giles took three wickets as Sri Lanka made 138 for four on a rain-shortened first day of the first Test on Tuesday.

England took the initiative after a two-hour break for rain, taking three wickets for 49 runs in the final 25.2-over session.

Giles, who struggled for form and rhythm in Bangladesh after remodelling his action, took two wickets for one run during a five-over spell before play was called off because of bad light.

The stylish Kumara Sangakkara was unbeaten on 39, having hit six fours, with Thilan Samaraweera at the other end.

The hosts, having won the toss on a flat pitch expected to offer turn later, began well as Sanath Jayasuriya and Marvan Atapattu put on 76 for the first wicket, while also passing 3000 Test runs as an opening pair.

Giles, though, broke through with his 11th ball of the series as Jayasuriya was caught bat-pad. The former skipper, who was becoming ever more fluent after hitting eight fours in his 48, prodded forward tentatively to a delivery that spun and bounced more than he expected.

Giles and off spinner Gareth Batty found some assistance from the pitch but it was allrounder Andrew Flintoff who asked the most questions, troubling both openers with his extra pace and bounce as he bowled around the wicket.

Atapattu could have been dismissed twice in his first two overs as he nicked through the slips and pushed back a half-chance to the bowler.

But Flintoff was rewarded in the afternoon, returning after the rain to dismiss Atapattu.

Sangakkara and Mahela Jaywardene (17) added 44 before Giles was reintroduced. He struck with his second ball as Jayawardene, perhaps unluckily, was adjudged to have been caught at silly point. Skipper Hashan Tillekeratne followed soon after, shaping to cut and Read hanging on to the thick edge.

Nasser Hussain was forced to withdraw from the side with a virus. (Reuters)

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