GALLE – Sri Lanka needed less than four days to thrash West Indies by an innings and six runs in the opening Test at Galle on Saturday with Rangana Herath leading the victory charge by claiming his fifth 10-wicket haul.
The touring side, who have never won a Test match in Sri Lanka, were bundled out for 227 in their second innings in the afternoon session, after being asked to follow on by the hosts.
Herath added three wickets to his previous day's removal of opener Kraigg Brathwaite (34) after claiming six victims in the first innings to finish with match figures of 10-147.
Three of the 37-year-old's landmark hauls have come at Galle, the venue for his Test debut against Australia more than 16 years ago.
"When I play here, there is always something for me as a spinner," Herath said after picking up the man of the match award. "That's the main reason (for my success)."
Debutant all-rounder Milinda Siriwardana and paceman Dhammika Prasad picked up two wickets apiece in the second innings for Sri Lanka.
Jermaine Blackwood played some delightful shots and showed nimble footwork against the spinners during his knock of 92, his second highest score in Tests, but was the last man out.
After resuming on 67-2, West Indies lost nightwatchman Devendra Bishoo (10) in wily left-arm spinner Herath's third over and then experienced batsman Marlon Samuels was out lbw off the first ball he faced.
Samuels did not offer a shot to a straight delivery and more surprisingly, decided to waste a review by challenging the umpire's decision. The bowler's hat-trick ball was fended away by Blackwood.
West Indies' hopes of avoiding a heavy defeat rested on Darren Bravo (31), who scored a 50 in the first innings, but the left-hander edged Nuwan Pradeep behind after captain Angelo Mathews' decision to allow the paceman one more over was vindicated.
"We had a lot of things to learn," West Indies captain Jason Holder, leading the side for the first time in Tests, said.
"We did not put enough runs in our first innings total and struggled again in the second innings.
"We did create chances but we just didn't take them. If we had held our chances I think the game would have been lot different."
Blackwood and wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin (11) stitched together a dogged 48-run stand for the sixth wicket before Siriwardena ended the pair's resistance when Ramdin edged a catch to Kaushal Silva at second slip.
The second match of the two-Test series starts in Colombo on Thursday.
Sri Lanka 1st innings 484 (D. Karunaratne 186, D. Chandimal 151; D. Bishoo 4-143)
West Indies 1st innings 251 (D. Bravo 50; R. Herath 6-68)
West Indies 2nd innings (Overnight: 67-2)
K. Brathwaite lbw b Herath 34
S. Hope b Siriwardana 6
Da. Bravo c K. Perera b Pradeep 31
D. Bishoo c Mathews b Herath 10
M. Samuels lbw b Herath 0
J. Blackwood c K. Silva b Prasad 92
D. Ramdin c K. Silva b Siriwardana 11
J. Holder run out (Mathews) 18
K. Roach st K. Perera b Herath 5
J. Taylor lbw b Prasad 5
S. Gabriel not out 7
Extras (lb-3 nb-3 w-2) 8
Total (all out, 68.3 overs) 227
Fall of wickets: 1-18 S. Hope,2-60 K. Brathwaite,3-74 D. Bishoo,4-74 M. Samuels,5-88 Da. Bravo,6-136 D. Ramdin,7-172 J. Holder,8-178 K. Roach,9-189 J. Taylor,10-227 J. Blackwood
D. Prasad 9.3 - 3 - 28 - 2(nb-2 w-2)
R. Herath 22 - 5 - 79 - 4
N. Pradeep 14 - 1 - 28 - 1
M. Siriwardana 12 - 1 - 60 - 2
T. Kaushal 11 - 3 - 29 - 0(nb-1)
Umpire: Marais Erasmus
Umpire: Richard Illingworth
TV umpire: Simon Fry
Match referee: David Boon
Result: Sri Lanka won by an innings and 6 runs.–Reuters