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Herath, Eranga put Kiwis under pressure

Galle: Rangana Herath and Shaminda Eranga shared five wickets to put New Zealand under pressure on the opening day of the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle on Saturday.

Left-arm spinner Herath removed well-set Brendon McCullum (68), Daniel Flynn (53) and James Franklin (three) in the afternoon session before New Zealand reached 155-6 in their first innings at tea.

The tourists were struggling at 40-3 following paceman Eranga's double-strike in the morning before McCullum and left-handed Flynn steadied the innings with a 90-run stand for the fourth wicket.

McCullum played some aggressive shots in the afternoon, hitting off-spinner Suraj Randiv and Herath for sixes. He fell immediately after hitting his second six, bowled by Herath.

The New Zealand opener also cracked eight fours in his 125-ball knock.

Herath got his third wicket when he had Flynn caught behind after the batsman had hit seven fours in his 152-ball knock.

Sri Lanka's fast bowlers did the early damage when they bagged three wickets after New Zealand elected to bat, with Eranga striking twice and Nuwan Kulasekara once.

Eranga, playing only his second Test, removed opener Martin Guptill (11) and Kane Williamson for no score off three deliveries, while Kulasekara bowled skipper Ross Taylor (nine) in his fifth over.

Guptill was caught by Angelo Mathews who took a low catch to his right at second slip, while Williamson was caught at first slip by Tharanga Paranavitana in the same over.

McCullum played some handsome shots in the morning, hitting Eranga for two successive fours early in his innings before completing his half-century in the second session.

New Zealand went into the match with three fast bowlers -- Trent Boult, Doug Bracewell and Tim Southee -- and one specialist spinner, Jeetan Patel.

Sri Lanka named two pacemen, Kulasekara and Eranga, and as many spinners, Suraj Randiv and Herath, in their team.

Sri Lankan opener Dimuth Karunaratne, who replaced injured Tillakaratne Dilshan, made his Test debut.

(Agencies)

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