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Sri Lanka beat New Zealand in first Test

By AAP Newswire

Skipper Dimuth Karunaratne has led by example, hitting a sparkling 122 to help Sri Lanka to secure a six-wicket victory against New Zealand in the opening Test at Galle.

Chasing 268 runs to go 1-0 up in the two-Test series, Karunaratne's 161-run opening stand with Lahiru Thirimanne (64) set the tone for a successful chase on Sunday at the Galle International Stadium.

New Zealand spinners claimed two wickets in successive overs to try to prevent it being a cakewalk but Karunaratne's ninth Test century effectively killed off the contest.

Karunaratne stroked six boundaries and hit one six before the right-hander was caught behind chasing a wide Tim Southee delivery.

Resuming the final day at 0-133, the opening pair ploughed on until Will Somerville trapped Thirimanne lbw on review after the initial appeal was rejected.

Kusal Mendis (10) looked in a hurry to seal the match as he hit Somerville for a six and a four before his attempted sweep off Ajaz Patel found Jeet Raval at midwicket.

Karunaratne brought up his 100 with his fifth boundary, raising his arms to celebrate.

Kusal Perera made a quick 23 while Angelo Mathews (28no) hit the winning run as Sri Lanka romped home in an extended morning session and clinched 60 points in the newly created Test championship.

The second Test begins on Thursday in Colombo.