Southee leads fightback

Galle: Seamer Tim Southee spearheaded a great fightback by New Zealand on Day II of the first Test against Sri Lanka to leave the match fascinatingly poised on Sunday.

Southee's four for 46 was crucial in helping to restrict the home side to a first-innings lead of 26 as they were bowled out for 247.

Although New Zealand then lost Brendon McCullum (13) in their second innings, they were still able to close on 35 for one ' a lead of nine.

Southee started the day with a burst of three for 18 from seven overs and with Trent Boult (two for 46) at the other end providing excellent support, Sri Lanka were reduced to 50 for five having resumed at nine for one. The Black Caps made 221 first up.

"We were disappointed with our batting in the first innings and we knew the bowlers had to step up to get us back into the game," Southee told reporters.