1st Day: Sri Lanka made 220-5; Ajmal took 2 wickets
SHARJAH: Sri Lanka were 220-5 at stumps of the first day of Sharjah test, Angelo Mathews(24) and Prasanna Jayawardene(28) will resume the batting on Friday, ARY News reported.
Sri Lankan batsmen played with caution with the run rate of 2.44 runs/over. They needed only a draw to win their first away series since 1999-00 against high profile teams excluding Zimbabwe and Bangladesh.
Veteran batsmen Kumara Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene jointly added 99 runs to the total scoring 52 and 47 respectively.
Pakistan's attack, however, was resolute and remained accurate throughout but it was Sri Lanka’s defensive approach that made it ineffective. There were missed opportunities from Pakistan too. Dimuth Karunaratne, who scored 34 edged Ajmal on to his pad; the wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed, however, was so busy appealing for an lbw that he didn't bother catching the ball.
Another was of Sangakkara on 15, when he tried to sweep Rehman and the ball lobbed off the glove to Younis Khan at first slip, but because they had only one review remaining Pakistan decided not to use it to try and overturn the not-out decision.
And late in the day, Mohammad Talha dropped Mathews before he had scored the first of his 24 runs, though it was a difficult chance off his own bowling.
Pakistan spinners played a significant role; Saeed Ajmal returned to his form taking two quick wickets not allowing Sri Lanka to maintain pace.The left-armer Abdur Rehman, who replaced the injured Bilawal Bhatti, varied his pace and trajectory, and constantly attacked the stumps with tremendous accuracy to return figures of 24-9-45-1.
Although the Sharjah’s pitch which is largely devoid of pace. Under such condition Junaid Khan and Mohammad Talha took 1 wicket each.