Cardiff: England will have expected to have problems removing a Jayawardene during this series, but that was likely to be Mahela not Prasanna. Sri Lanka's wicketkeeper, batting in the elevated position of No. 6, hit his third Test hundred to lift the visitors to an impressive 400 on the second day in Cardiff. Thilan Samaraweera and the lower order also played vital hands to ensure a frustrating time for England who lost Andrew Strauss in the final over of the day to finish on 47 for 1.
Right from the beginning of this Test Sri Lanka have impressed with their mindset. They were flexible enough to adjust the balance of their side - and the choice of two spinners could yet prove masterstroke - Tillakaratne Dilshan opted to bat when many visiting captains may have hidden behind bowling first, then the top order took on the responsibility of setting up a platform with a stubborn and committed display. To remove Strauss, who was well caught at second slip of Suranga Lakmal with five balls remaining, capped off a day that couldn't have gone much better for them.
Having opted for a five-man attack it put pressure on Prasanna to perform the role of a frontline batsman. A Test average of 30 showed he was capable but, as Matt Prior has occasional found, there is a different onus on a wicketkeeper when they walk in at four down rather than five. Prasanna, though, handled his task with aplomb and, although he was dropped at slip on 89 by Strauss off Graeme Swann, it took nothing away from his achievement as he reached a hundred from 147 balls.