Younus Khan continued to frustrate Sri Lanka on the second morning as he plodded his way to an unbeaten 171 till lunch and launch Pakistan towards a big first innnings total and departed shortly after the lunch at 177 off 331 balls.
Following Khan’s departure, wicket keeper Sarfaraz Ahmed and spinner Abdul Rehman took the reins and scored 55 off 71 balls and 50 off 61 balls, respectively. The late order blitz brought Pakistan in a stronger position against islanders.
The wicket of Asad Shafiq (75) was Sri Lanka’s solitary success of the morning after Pakistan started the day on 261 for four wickets.
The right-handed batsman failed to read the arm ball from Rangana Herath and was trapped leg before after hitting eight fours and two sixes during his 147-ball innings.
His dismissal ended a fifth-wicket partnership of 137 with Younus.
Younus continued to ride his luck and the review system again came to his rescue when he survived a leg before shout against Herath on 148.
Sri Lanka challenged the umpire’s decision but lost the review as television replays showed the ball had brushed the batsman’s glove before hitting his pad.
Paceman Shaminda Eranga, conscious of his injured right webbing, also floored an easy return catch offered by Younus.
On 157, Younus had another life as wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella missed a stumping chance off the luckless Herath, who had figures of three for 100 at lunch.
Pakistan’s run rate picked up marginally with the arrival of Sarfraz, who was aggressive from the onset.
Dilruwan Perera took five wickets for 137 runs, thus topping the bowling card for Sri Lanka. Experienced Rengana Herath bagged three wickets – all three strong defensive pillars of the team, Misbahul Haq, Asad Shafiq and Azhar Ali – for 116 runs.