Sri Lankan openers Dimuth Karunaratne and Oshada Fernando made a solid start to their first innings batting through the afternoon on the second day of the first Test against Zimbabwe on Tuesday to reach 88 without loss.
The visitors are still 318 runs behind the hosts who lost their last four wickets in the morning to be bowled out for 406.
Karunaratne and Fernando faced few difficulties from an attack that lacked spark, both reaching 40 not out at the interval.
The only chance saw Fernando flicking a ball from Victor Nyauchi down the legside but wicketkeeper Regis Chakabva could not hold on.
The left-arm spinner Lasith Embuldeniya, who took a hammering on Monday, mainly at the hands of centurion Sean Williams, picked up three of the last four in the morning session to finish the Zimbabwe innings with four for 182.
Resuming on 352 for six, Zimbabwe lost Chakabva for his overnight 31 in the sixth over of the morning after he gave a feint edge off Embuldeniya to wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella.
Debutant Tinotenda Mutombodzi made 33 before missing a sweep to fall leg before to Dhananjaya de Silva who finished with three for 71.
Some resistance from the last three took the Zimbabwe total past 400 but Embuldeniya accounted for both Donald Tiripano and Nyauchi who was brilliantly caught by de Silva at first slip.
Sri Lankan opener Oshada Fernando was dropped down the legside by Regis Chakabva and went on to reach 40 not out at tea
This appeal by Lasith Embuldeniya against Donald Tiripano was unsuccessful but the left-arm spinner finished with 4-182 as Sri Lanka bowled out Zimbabwe for 406