Dilshan departs before rain stops second Test

Sri Lanka's Tillakaratne Dilshan reacst after being hit on the hand by a ball from England's Chris Tremlett during the 3rd day of the second test match at Lord's cricket ground, London. (AP)

England finally saw the back of Tillakaratne Dilshan at Lord's but not before the Sri Lanka captain had made 193 in the second Test here on Sunday.

Sri Lanka were 372 for three in reply to England's first innings 486, a deficit of 114 runs, when rain forced an early tea on the third day.

Dilshan, 187 not out at lunch, got the four runs he needed for the highest Test score by a Sri Lankan at Lord's, topping the 190 made by Sidath Wettimuny during the islanders' Test debut at 'the home of cricket' in 1984.

But on 192 he was, for the second time in his innings, struck a painful blow on the right hand by fast bowler Chris Tremlett.

A visibly hurt Dilshan carried on but there was no maiden Test double century for the dashing opener.

Instead, he added just one more run before being bowled by a full-length Steven Finn delivery that nipped back sharply under cloudy skies and clipped Dilshan's leg before hitting the stumps.

In all, Dilshan's Test-best innings spanned more than seven hours and featured two sixes and 20 fours.

His exit left Sri Lanka 370 for three after an entertaining third-wicket stand of 82 with Mahela Jayawardene.

Former captain Jaywaradene, whose two previous Tests at Lord's had both yielded hundreds, was 40 not out when rain forced the players off the field at 2.37pm local time (1337GMT).

Thilan Samaraweera was unbeaten on one, with 51 overs left in the day.

Dilshan's exit was a reward for a much-improved England bowling display following a struggling morning session for the hosts.

Sri Lanka resumed on 231 for one -- a marked contrast to their previous innings of 82 all out that led to England's innings and 14-run win in Cardiff in the first of this three-match series.

Dilshan was 127 not out and Kumar Sangakkara, his immediate predecessor as captain, 13 not out as they set about closing in on an England first innings total where Matt Prior made 126.

Before England took the new ball, Dilshan cut and drove Graeme Swann's off-spin for two fours in as many deliveries.

A single off Swann then saw Dilshan to 150 in 192 balls with two sixes and 15 fours.

England took the new ball as soon as it was available, after 80 overs, with Sri Lanka 285 for one and four balls later Tremlett struck when Sangakkara edged a delivery angled across him to wicketkeeper Prior.

The left-hander managed just 26 in nearly two hours but the run-rate climbed quickly after his exit.

Dilshan pulled Stuart Broad for four to go to his Test-best score, surpassing the 168 he made against Bangladesh in Colombo in 2005.

Then Jayawardene got off the mark with a leg-glanced boundary off Tremlett.

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