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Rain delays England vs Sri Lanka 3rd Test match as flag row flutters on

Rain delayed the scheduled 11:00am local time of the fifth and final day’s play in the third Test between England and Sri Lanka at Lord’s on Monday.

cricket Updated: Jun 13, 2016 16:12 IST
Sri Lanka vs England,Test series,Test match
England's Alex Hales reacts as he walks back to the pavilion after being out for 94 runs during play on the fourth day of the third test cricket match between England and Sri Lanka at Lord's cricket ground in London.(AFP Photo)

Rain delayed the scheduled 11:00am local time (1000 GMT start) of the fifth and final day’s play in the third Test between England and Sri Lanka at Lord’s on Monday.

Sri Lanka were 32 without loss, needing a further 330 runs to reach their victory target of 362, with England 2-0 up in the three-match series.

Dimuth Karunaratne was 19 not out and Kaushal Silva 12 not out.

As Sri Lanka players surveyed the scene, there was no sign of the national flag that had been draped across their dressing room balcony on Sunday in protest at a wrongly called no-ball that denied them a key wicket.

England opener Alex Hales who eventually made 94, was on 58 he was bowled by Sri Lanka paceman Nuwan Pradeep.

But Australian umpire Rod Tucker had already called a no-ball.

Replays indicated part of Pradeep’s front foot had landed just behind the crease but fielding teams are unable to challenge a no-ball call by an umpire and Hales survived.

Under current International Cricket Council regulations, incorrect no-ball calls can be revoked but umpires can check for a no-ball retrospectively following the fall of a wicket.

The Sri Lanka flag was draped over the tourists’ dressing-room balcony for some 45 minutes in protest at Tucker’s decision.

Flags traditionally fly above both dressing rooms at Lord’s and the flag on the balcony was eventually removed at the request of Marylebone Cricket Club, the owners of Lord’s.

“You feel a little down, it is sad,” Sri Lanka Cricket president Thilinga Sumathipala told reporters.

“The management on tour is very sad about that decision. It will be reported to the ICC.”

Several close Decision Review System calls went against Sri Lanka on Sunday and Sumathipala said: “If the decisions are continually happening against you many times then they (the players) will get demoralised. If they feel it’s only happening to us, that’s sad.”

If Sri Lanka chase down their target they will set a new record for the most runs scored in the fourth innings to win a Test at Lord’s.

That was set by the West Indies when they made 344 for one, requiring 342, against England at Lord’s in 1984, with opener Gordon Greenidge leading the way with an unbeaten 214.

First Published: Jun 13, 2016 16:11 IST