Pakistan v Sri Lanka, 1st Test, Abu Dhabi, 3rd day

Marvan Atapattu hopeful of saving Test

ESPNcricinfo staff

October 20, 2011

Comments: 21 | Text size: A | A

Taufeeq Umar celebrates his double-century, Pakistan v Sri Lanka, 1st Test, Abu Dhabi, 3rd day, October 20, 2011
Taufeeq Umar's career-best score of 236 was hard earned © AFP
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Sri Lanka have an enormous challenge ahead of them to save the first Test against Pakistan in Abu Dhabi, but their batting coach Marvan Atapattu has said his team can do it. Sri Lanka trail by 267 with nine wickets in hand in their second innings and two days to go.

"We really have to bat well in the second innings and I am sure the boys will do their best to save this match," Atapattu said.

Sri Lanka conceded a first-innings lead of 314 after they were dismissed for 197 and Pakistan replied with 511 for 6 declared. Atapattu said the opportunity had been lost with the first-innings collapse.

"I feel that we missed an opportunity. It's certainly not a 200-pitch and we all accept that," he said. "We were at least short by a good 100 runs. The outfield is not fast by any means and the wicket wasn't a batting-friendly wicket for a start. I wouldn't say it was two-paced but there was something there for bowlers who were ready to bend their backs."

"It's hard conditions, tough conditions. Obviously, we knew what we were against, but we weren't at our best. Tomorrow will be a new day and hopefully the ones who missed out will have a good day tomorrow."

One batsmen who thrived in these tough conditions was Pakistan opener Taufeeq Umar, whose 12-hour double-century set-up Pakistan's push towards victory. His 236 was the first double-hundred by a Pakistan opener since Aamer Sohail's 205 at Old Trafford in 1992.

"It was my burning desire to score a Test double-hundred," Taufeeq said. "I am delighted to hear that I am in an illustrious company of Hanif [Mohammad] and Sohail. It was very hot, but I kept telling myself that my team needed me to stay and I achieved that to put my team in a strong position."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by on (October 21, 2011, 12:08 GMT)

good to see pakistan playing and winning too.

Posted by 3rd_man on (October 21, 2011, 10:54 GMT)

I agree with johnathanjosephs, only thing different is we should bring Kaushal silva instead of Prasanna Jayawardane. then our batting look very solid. mind you Chandimal can open the batting. he is top order player. I would love him batting at 3 but Sangakkara still the best that position. we are waisting Mathews talent sending him too late. Mahela not performing as we expect him to do at No4. selectors should not fear to ask him down the order. for me batting line up should be 1. Dilshan 2. Thirimanne 3. Sangakkara 4. Mathews 5. Mahela 6. Chandimal 7.Kaushal Silva 8. Herath 9. Lakmal 10. Welagedara 11. Pradeep.

Posted by yorkslanka on (October 21, 2011, 10:38 GMT)

personally i think that what we need is ajantha mendis or suraj randhiv back in this team alongside herath..what are the selectors playing at leaving these two guys out...its almost as if you cant get a place in teh team until you have not much time to go in your career..great players arent so overnight, they develop and therefore need time to do so...

Posted by Zookinii on (October 21, 2011, 6:52 GMT)

Would be better if samaraweera was in this series rather than paranavitana.

Posted by   on (October 21, 2011, 6:48 GMT)

Mathews has been the best SL batsman against Aussies and he is in a good form as well. Why not promote him.

Posted by qpzmwoxn on (October 21, 2011, 6:45 GMT)

para is not that bad he does average more than 34(which is less than most of the bowling averages in this team).Nuwan pradeep should not be in the team. he averages less than 2 wickaets a game and almost 4 runs an over in first class cricket. kulasekera is a promising allrounder and they need to drop welegedara, prasad and lakmal. will b good when eranga is fit again and then they can play 2 spinners with hopefully mathews back bowling soon.

Posted by   on (October 21, 2011, 6:15 GMT)

feel sorry bout SL cricket administrators are only concerned bout their financial gains through cricket not the development of the sport youngsters have waiting in the bench while players like paranavithana and prasanna are continueosly failed sorry bout SL cricket sanga mahela retired they are worst than bangladesh

Posted by Roshini on (October 21, 2011, 6:13 GMT)

You can say anything that pleases Sri Lanka but there lies the naked truth for all Sri Lankans to witness match after match. The fact remains that Sri Lanka will always struggle to bowl out a quality test batting line up twice regardless of pitch conditions. Opposition scoring 500 plus will be a common feature time after time.After SL lost the services of legendary Murali, and very good bowlers like Vass and Malinga (for test cricket) the aftermath has been quite dismal. The present crop of bowlers will have to seek divine powers if they are to push Sri Lanka out of this misery and bring home some results.

Posted by FadeToBlack on (October 21, 2011, 4:11 GMT)

@Lahori_munde I think you have misunderstood the definition of the term 'ordinary'. A couple of tough months doesn't make a team ordinary. Another word you should understand is 'mediocre' which is what pak has been for the last 4-5 years. Saying that it is good to see pak turning it around lately as world cricket needs a strong pak team.

Posted by ajayrcs on (October 21, 2011, 3:52 GMT)

Pakistan team is the best asian cricket side no doubt!

Posted by DwightR on (October 21, 2011, 2:35 GMT)

SL failure in this test starts with there team selection 1. Chandimal & Randiv should have been playing 2. Samareweera should be brought back into the squad. My XI- Dilshan, Chandimal, Sangakarra, Mahela J, Samareweera, Mathews, Prassana J, Herath, Randiv, Lakmal, Pradeep. Mathews is quite capable to being a 3rd seamer to Lakmal n Pradeep n SL should attack with two specalist spinners. Samareweera solidifies the middle order and dilshan n chandimal are a more fluent opening pair. SL as an ODI/T20 side are elite but as a test team they are looking pathetic...the last test series against Aus n so far this 1st Pak test has been an embrassement

Posted by IAS2009 on (October 21, 2011, 1:34 GMT)

by no means SL is a ordinary team, they just played world cup final, their fielding and batting is exceptional in SL, very tough to beat and have been performing consistently, now on test level, this current team is missing Murli who was their main wicket taker in test match, SL chance of winning any test match in the future is very bleak, their bowlers can not take 20 wickets on any batting friendly surface. It will be big morale booster for Pakistan to beat SL, If Sangakara and Jayawardene are out without long inning this game is over in favor of Pakistan.

Posted by   on (October 21, 2011, 0:36 GMT)

at the moment for SL its all about saving tests..not winning tests..

Posted by chamalqif on (October 20, 2011, 23:52 GMT)

Tomorrow at tea, SL all out for 250 runs.

Posted by playitstraight on (October 20, 2011, 21:25 GMT)

@jonathonjosephs - I agree fully with you. Para has got way too many chances now and btw he has scored 2 back-to-back centuries v India of course on his home pitch. Dilshan should definitely switch back to opening, he has played several great knocks like the 193 v England and the 83 v Australia. Remove Para, Prasanna Jayawardene and bring Dinesh Chandimal to wicketkeep in and make Dilshan open. Of course, this can only be done in the second test but I think SL have a very good chance of saving the current test unless the umpire makes some bad errors. next test v pakistan for sri lanka shud look like this: Dilshan (c), Thrimmane, Sanga, Mahela, Chandimal, Matthews, Herath, Welegedara, Pradeep, D. Prasad, and the new Kosala Kulasekara (in place of the hopeless Lakmal). Yes, I believe that 6 batsmen are enough and Herath and the other bowlers can bat a bit too. Because SL's weakness is bowling so they need more fast bowlers. Good luck SL on saving the current test and on the next test!!!

Posted by La_Bangla on (October 20, 2011, 21:15 GMT)

Well done Pakistan. Salaam Misbah and team. We need to continue performing like this against top ranked teams. As I have always said Srilanka is very ordinary team. And if KumarSanga leaves then they are worst then Bangladesh.

Posted by   on (October 20, 2011, 20:22 GMT)

the second best possible out come of this double ton is that there would be no more !

Posted by   on (October 20, 2011, 20:15 GMT)


Posted by   on (October 20, 2011, 17:25 GMT)

taufeeq is d secend best opner after anwar............

Posted by ibbani on (October 20, 2011, 17:21 GMT)

I hope SRL will save the test. past is past and you still have 9 wickets in hand, Mahela, Sanga, Tili, you can do it..

Posted by johnathonjosephs on (October 20, 2011, 17:12 GMT)

It baffles me to see Paranavitana still in the side. The man is the slowest player I have ever seen, plus he does not score any runs. If memory serves correct, I think he has only one cenutry in 20+ matches. The likes of Warnapura were better, but Thirimanne looks like he has some potential for now. My Idea? Bring Dilly back in (tell him opening the Test is not the same as ODI/T20) and have him and thirimanne open. Bring Chandimal in (he needs exposure badly) and put him at No. 5 (before Matthews/Prasanna). Hope the Lankans do this next game

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