Sri Lankan batting genius Mahela Jayawardene is regarded as one of the best of contemporary times and fittingly so, as under his belt are over 11,000 Test runs and 34 hundreds. Jayawardenewho made his Test debut against India in 1997 has been Sri Lanka’s prolific batter since then.His magnificent wrist work, ability to pierce gaps and a sharp cricket brain all account to Mahela’s success.The supremely talented batsmen had earlier announced that the on-going home series against Pakistan will be his lastappearance in Test cricket. As Jayawardene is playing for one last time we take a look back at his career and bring out some of his best Test innings.
1. 167 vs New Zealand, 1998
In his fourth Test Mahela Jayawardene scored his maiden Test century against New Zealand, but he already had notched three half-centuries before that. Coming in to bat at number three Jayawardene propelled Sri Lanka with a stunning hundred to hand his team a valuable lead. Jayawardene went to score 167 and no other batsmen even crossed a 50-run mark. With the help of Jayawardene’s knock Sri Lanka won the Test match by an innings and 16 runs.
2. 242 vs India, 1999
Mahela Jayawardene in his career has scored seven double-hundreds and first of those came against India in second match of Asian Test Championship. It was his second century and Jayawardene early on in his career showed how capable he is of playing marathon knocks.He contributed 242 out of Sri Lanka’s 485 and second highest score in that innings was just 66. However, the match ended in a draw but World already knew how adept Jayawardene was.
3. 134 vs England, 2003
After dismissing England for a partly score of 265 Sri Lanka stacked huge total courtesy Thilan Samaraweera and Mahela Jayawardene’s mammoth partnership. Jayawardene was scoring freely and hurriedly of the two to notch his 10th Test ton. Sri Lanka won the match by an innings and 215 runs.
4. 119 vs England, 2006
After Sri Lanka were forced to follow-on they needed something special from their Skipper and Mahela Jayawardene exactly provided that. Following-on Sri Lanka had lost its second openerjust after the Tea break on day three and in came Jayawardene to guide his team out of trouble to score his 14th Test ton. He scored 199 during his over six hours stay at the wicket to see his side secure a draw which looked highly impossible at one stage of the match.
5. 374 vs South Africa, 2006
14-2 and then 638-3 this is what fall of wickets read after Mahela Jayawardene and Kumara Sangakkara put on an epic 624 runs partnership for third wicket. After bundling out South Africa for just 169 runs in 1st innings Sri Lanka courtesy Jayawardene and Sangakkara piled up runs to make sure Proteaslose test match by an innings and 153 runs. Jayawardene’s masterful act saw him score 374 runs.