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McCollum helps Wolves to bite back for a draw

 

By Ian Callender

Ireland Wolves' hopes of bowling out Sri Lanka A for a second time were thwarted by a 20-year-old opening batsman.

Pathum Nissanka, playing only his 19th first class match, scored his second double century to keep the Wolves in the field for 60 overs yesterday and turn an overnight 25-runs deficit into a lead of 263.

A declaration followed, leaving the tourists a tricky 32 overs to bat out for the draw and when they lost three wickets for 28, panic could have set in.

But Waringstown batsman James McCollum confirmed his name will be in the frame when the side for the Test match is selected with an undefeated 45 from 65 balls - bringing his first class tour average to 96.

On a pitch which did not deteriorate, it was a hard day for the bowlers - supported by the home side's late declaration which came after Chamika Karunaratne had reached his maiden century - but Mark Adair was rewarded with two wickets and 18-year-old leg-spinner JJ Garth finally dismissed Nissanka after a 274-ball stay.

The disappointment of the match was second successive failures for James Shannon and captain Harry Tector, who bowled only four overs in the match, as James Cameron-Dow and Garth shared a marathon 94 overs for figures of 11-409.

Scores: Ireland Wolves 508-8 dec ( N Rock 85, L Tucker 80, J Cameron-Dow 76 not out, J McCollum 72, S Doheny 58, JJ Garth 45) and 89-3 (J McCollum 45 not out, L Tucker 22 not out) Sri Lanka A 303 (A Perera 127, S Ashan 72; J Cameron-Dow 5-99, C Young 3-76) and 468-7 dec (P Nissanka 217, C Karunaratne 100 not out, K Mendis 53; JJ Garth 3-140, M Adair 2-65). Match drawn.

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