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undergroundnewsroom.com October 23, 2017


1st Test: All three results possible as day five begins

03 October 2017, 08:37 | Nina Mathis

Bowling on a slow track in Abu Dhabi. Mohammad Amir returned wicketless

Bowling on a slow track in Abu Dhabi. Mohammad Amir returned wicketless

How did we hurtle, from the dullest 11 sessions of Test cricket possible, to this stirring, heart-palpitating, dramedy of a conclusion?

Earlier, Pakistan in response to Sri Lanka's 419 scored 422 in their first innings.

With this mild insanity of a spell, he has confirmed himself one of the greatest defenders of scores in Test history. Muttiah Muralitharan leads with 22, followed by Shane Warne with 10.

Chandimal added 134 for the fifth wicket with Niroshan Dickwella, who made a career-best 83, before frustrating Pakistan further with a 92-run stand for the sixth wicket with Dilruwan Perera, who made 33. They had the game sealed when Dilruwan Perera dismissed Yasir Shah. Herath doesn't over step. And Mohammad Abbas walked into the middle like a goat into a slaughterhouse.

Pakistan were visibly heartbroken. When on 32, Ali also completed 5,000 Test runs in his 61st Test.

Pakistan had lost two wickets for just seven runs and Sri Lankans were beaming.

The Sarfraz Ahmed-led side were never in the chase as they got to an very bad start when Sami Aslam got out in the fourth over itself.

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Kusal Mendis was 16 not out and Suranga Lakmal undefeated on 2. He mentioned that the wicket of Azhar Ali was the turning point in the match. Ergo, the Islanders are now 1-0 up in the two-match Test series. We were surprised, but we thought before play started today that 160-plus would be a winning total.

In the end, the final celebrations were a little more muted, both on the field and among the support staff. Rangana Herath bagged another five-for for Sri Lanka.

Stars for the Lankan batting side were Dimuth Karunaratne and Dinesh Chandimal. The other two came against Pakistan (2009) and India (2015). Yasir had bowled with venom, turning his legbreak practically out of the next district, slipping in that slider that seemed no less destructive. In five Tests since then (and one potential bowling innings still to go in the fifth) he has taken 30 wickets at an average of 21.96. The remainder of the morning belonged more or less to Yasir.

He is the first bowler to take a century of wickets against Pakistan, beating Indian paceman Kapil Dev, who fell one short with 99. A Sri Lanka win can be backed at 6/1 with Sky Bet. They had to remain positive and not getting tentative and looking for runs. Pakistan, understandably, had left for lunch with a strut. Their previous lowest too, incidentally, had come against Pakistan in Faisalabad (42-run win) in 1995.

Pakistan are 5/4 with Sky Bet for victory, Sri Lanka can be backed at 4/1 and the draw is on offer at 6/5. The duo took Pakistan to 67 at tea.

"Maybe I have played more against them, that's why".



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