DHAKA: Mahela Jayawardene smashed a solid 129 not out to put Sri Lanka in a winning position on the third day of the opening Test against Bangladesh here on Sunday.
The Sri Lankan captain hit one six and 15 fours in his 24th Test hundred to help his side post 291-4 in the second innings at stumps for a massive overall lead of 406.
The tourists were in trouble at 18-2 before Jayawardene bolstered the innings with a 135-run stand for the third wicket with Kumar Sangakkara (67) and 138 for the next with Thilan Samaraweera (62).
Paceman Mahbubul Alam struck in the eighth over when he trapped Malinda Warnapura (eight) leg-before and Mashrafe Mortaza bowled Michael Vandort (six) in the next over.
Jayawardene, 31, and left-handed Sangakkara then kept the Bangladeshi attack at bay with their responsible knocks, batting comfortably against both pace and spin.
The Sri Lankan skipper reached his century in the final session when he hit Alam through mid-wicket for a four. He punished the bowler again, hitting three successive fours in an over.
Bangladesh got just one wicket in the afternoon session when left-arm spinner Mehrab Hossain had Sangakkara caught behind. The Sri Lankan batsman struck eight fours in his 27th Test half-century.
But there was no respite for the hosts as middle-order batsman Samaraweera gave valuable support to his captain before being bowled by Mortaza off the day's last delivery.
Samaraweera, who top-scored with 90 in the first innings, hit eight fours in his 17th Test half-century.
Bangladesh were earlier dismissed for 178 in their first innings in reply to Sri Lanka's 293 after having resumed at 177-9. Off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan finished with 6-49.
Sri Lanka needed just one over to end Bangladesh's innings, with Muralitharan aving last-man Alam caught by Warnapura at short-leg for no score. It was Muralitharan's 66th haul of five or more wickets in a Test innings.
The match will resume on Tuesday after a rest day on Monday because of Bangladesh's election.
The second and final Test starts in Chittagong on January 3.