Pakistan v Sri Lanka, 2nd Test, Dubai October 25, 2011

Can either team take twenty wickets?

43

Match Facts

Pakistan v Sri Lanka, October 26, Dubai
Start time 1000 (0600 GMT)

Big Picture


Pakistan wasted the opportunity to go 1-0 up in Abu Dhabi by dropping several catches in Sri Lanka's second innings. Sri Lanka pulled off a great escape, wiping out a 314-run deficit by batting more than two days to save the Test. So who possesses that intangible advantage - momentum - as the teams prepare for battle in Dubai?

Tillakaratne Dilshan said firmly that his team held the edge. He would, of course. Having been pushed into the tightest of corners, they found a way out, through the resolute batting of Kumar Sangakkara and Prasanna Jayawardene. However, the rest of their batsmen, with the exception of Angelo Mathews, failed in both innings. So there's no real reason for the others to go to Dubai with increased confidence. The greater worry, though, is their bowling attack, which managed to take only seven Pakistan wickets in 184.4 overs on a pitch that was not especially flat. And a flat one will be on offer sooner or later in the UAE.

Pakistan, on the other hand, dominated four days of the Test only to waste all their hard work through a spate of dropped chances that allowed both Sangakkara and Prasanna Jayawardene to bat for much longer than they should have. Pakistan's batsmen found run-scoring easy against an ineffective Sri Lankan attack, but it was the performance of their bowlers that will have encouraged them. The fast bowlers found movement and the spinners extracted turn to dismiss Sri Lanka for 197, a first-innings total far below par on that pitch. Even in the second innings, when batting appeared easier, they created plenty of chances. It wasn't their fault their fielders didn't take them. The challenge for Pakistan, however, will be to summon the energy to do it all over again, in conditions as hot and on a pitch that might not be as responsive.

Form guide


Sri Lanka: DDDLD
Pakistan: DWWLD

Spotlight


Back-to-back Tests are tough on the fitness of players in most conditions, but the intensity of the challenge rises significantly when they are played in the fierce heat of the desert. Pakistan's fast bowlers had plenty of work to do in Abu Dhabi, and if they can produce a similar effort - challenging Sri Lanka with pace, movement and accuracy - it will be a testament to their fitness and talent.

With Angelo Mathews not bowling, Sri Lanka had only a four-bowler attack, plus part-timer Dilshan, in Abu Dhabi, of which Rangana Herath was the solitary specialist spinner. He toiled for 63.4 overs but could pick up only three Pakistan wickets. Sri Lanka will need more from their most-experienced bowler, around whom the fast bowlers will have to be rotated. To his credit, though, Herath did control the run-flow effectively.

Team news


Taufeeq Umar, who batted 12 hours for a double-century in Abu Dhabi, had a finger injury during the Test that prevented him from fielding in the slips. Interim coach Mohsin Khan said Umar Gul also had a few niggles, but nothing serious. Both should be fit to play, and if there are no other fitness issues, expect Pakistan to name an unchanged XI.

Pakistan (likely): 1 Mohammad Hafeez, 2 Taufeeq Umar, 3 Azhar Ali, 4 Younis Khan, 5 Misbah-ul-Haq, 6 Asad Shafiq, 7 Adnan Akmal (wk), 8 Umar Gul, 9 Aizaz Cheema, 10 Saeed Ajmal, 11 Junaid Khan

Sri Lanka could tinker with their bowling attack, considering the one used in Abu Dhabi struggled to make an impact. Nuwan Pradeep went wicketless on debut. Their bowling bench-strength comprises fast bowler Dhammika Prasad and offspinner Suraj Randiv. The inability of Mathews to bowl severely affects the balance of their team because there is space for only four specialist bowlers and no allrounder.

Sri Lanka (likely): 1 Tharanga Paranavitana, 2 Lahiru Thirimanne, 3 Kumar Sangakkara, 4 Mahela Jayawardene, 5 Tillakaratne Dilshan (capt), 6 Angelo Mathews, 7 Prasanna Jayawardene (wk), 8 Nuwan Pradeep/Dhammika Prasad/Suraj Randiv, 9 Rangana Herath, 10 Chanaka Welegedera, 11 Suranga Lakmal.

Pitch and conditions


The temperatures are expected to be in the mid-30s but the pitch temperature will be a few degrees higher. Tillakaratne Dilshan said he expected the pitch to have more bounce than the one in Abu Dhabi did. "A good test wicket," he called it.

Stats & Trivia


  • There were four hundreds scored in Dubai's maiden Test, when Pakistan played South Africa last year. In the second innings, the two teams scored an aggregate of 661 runs for the loss of five wickets; in the first, they scored 628 for the loss of 20. Three out of four hundreds were scored in the second innings.

  • Since the beginning of 2009, Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan have added five century partnerships in seven innings. Their partnerships are: 130, 186*, 3, 142, 118, 100, 8* - 687 runs at 137.40.

  • Kumar Sangakkara needs 32 to equal Inzamam-ul-Haq's record for most runs scored in Tests between these two teams. Inzamam scored 1559 in 31 innings; Sangakkara has 1527 in 21, at an average of 80.36.

Quotes


" After such a [bad] performance in the field, we got two days so we have worked really hard on that, let's hope for the best in the second test"
Misbah-ul-Haq on Pakistan's catching.

"We had discussions on which area to improve and did that in training sessions. As a batting unit we are fully prepared to do well in this Test. Confidence is really high after the way we made a comeback and did so many things to save it [the first Test]."
Tillakaratne Dilshan.

George Binoy is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on October 26, 2011, 5:37 GMT

    pakistan did really a good in batting and bowling but thier fielders let them down.

  • on October 26, 2011, 5:24 GMT

    i think paranavithana needto be drop and replace chandimal his position.paranavithana look only own runs & not looking to win the game.rarely a get boundries.that's why chandi important to the team.

  • on October 26, 2011, 5:15 GMT

    well it was a dissapointing outing for pakistani boys in abu dhabi after taking a lead of 314 .actually defeats are humiliating but sometimes draws can klike these really prickle you. i have to admit that pakistani team really needs to lift their fielding up . sri lankans are really struggling to take wickets wiyhout murali

  • on October 26, 2011, 5:05 GMT

    The answer to 20 wickets lies in the raltive strength - the better batting V better bowling, conditional ofcourse to a fair wicket.

    Pakistan achivement in ist test was: Test batting stay power and big score. They cross 500 with a double by the opener. They lost the victory to fielding, but also bad luck. Strange catches some time are taken and dropped by th e best and the weakest fielders. The fact also remains, fairly and squarely that Batter Jaywender's (LBW unquestiionably wrong decision)took the match away from Pakistan at the most crucial stage.

    To Lankans: They proved their batting and fielding strength,, just as their Captain's inning when most needed. They are`psychologically down without their ace spinner Murli. Should he have been around with his action to begin with, will be debated for long time as question of disability of one against handicap of another. CRICKET IS WAR TODAY.

  • Fast_Track_Bully on October 26, 2011, 4:27 GMT

    Srilanka will win the match!

  • on October 26, 2011, 3:00 GMT

    in reply to TeamSelector..............Ajmal is one of the best offspin....u should never take him out.......he is the king of doosra

  • Usman.Shahid on October 26, 2011, 2:37 GMT

    My Team 1.Taufeeq 2. Hafeez 3. Azhar 4. Younis 5. Misbah 6. Adnan 7. Wahab 8. Umar Gul 9. Aizaz 10. Junaid 11. Saeed Ajmal

    We should have 5 front line bowlers to take 20 wickets on this pitch. But still to win a match we need a captain who wants to win. Misbah should be replaced with Hafeez as captain as a captian.

  • johnathonjosephs on October 26, 2011, 2:35 GMT

    Drop Paranavitan. That man is nothing is but bad for Lanka. All he does is slow the innings and get the momentum in the opposition's hands. Promote Dilly up the order to open with Thirimanne and either put Chandimal to replace Parana, or some allrounder. Bowling-wise, I would like to see Pradeep get another chance (he did bowl good in the beginning of 2nd day...) but I think Lakmal, Welegedera, Herath, and Randiv should be chosen. Lanka seems to be bent on their Murali configuration (3 seamers and Murali), but HErath is no Murali. 2 seamer/2 spinners combination is not bad if the spinners are good. A decent spinner is better than a crap seamer anyday, regardless of the configuration. Randiv's height can extract good bounce from the pitch as well. Looks like it will be a 350 pitch, but due to complaints, the pitch curators might make it less batting friendly to a 300 pitch

  • on October 26, 2011, 2:28 GMT

    with current team SL will find it difficult, Paranavitana needs to be dropped so Chandimal can come in and Mahela can open batting, Sl bowling is awefull but they have no better options really so they cant do anything about it they just suck, they struggled to get even 1 wicket last test so they shouldnt even dream of getting 20 wickets.

  • TeamSelector on October 26, 2011, 0:11 GMT

    Most people are saying that Pakistan should make one or two changes, but I think if they really want to win the second Test (as oppose to another draw); then they should make three changes. The first one is easy, Malik for Shafiq. Malik is more experienced, is an additional bowling option, can adapt his game & score quickly if need be & is one of Pakistan's better fielders. The second one is Wahab for Cheema. I think Wahab is a better wicket taker & two left handed seamers might create more problems for SL. Now for the third change ...... since we now have [2] right handed offies in Hafeez & Malik ...... then the logical change should be the leftie Rehman for Ajmal.

    1 Mohammad Hafeez, 2 Taufeeq Umar, 3 Azhar Ali, 4 Younis Khan, 5 Misbah-ul-Haq, 6 Shoaib Malik, 7 Adnan Akmal (wk), 8 Abdur Rehman, 9 Umar Gul, 10 Wahab Riaz, 11 Junaid Khan.

  • on October 26, 2011, 5:37 GMT

    pakistan did really a good in batting and bowling but thier fielders let them down.

  • on October 26, 2011, 5:24 GMT

    i think paranavithana needto be drop and replace chandimal his position.paranavithana look only own runs & not looking to win the game.rarely a get boundries.that's why chandi important to the team.

  • on October 26, 2011, 5:15 GMT

    well it was a dissapointing outing for pakistani boys in abu dhabi after taking a lead of 314 .actually defeats are humiliating but sometimes draws can klike these really prickle you. i have to admit that pakistani team really needs to lift their fielding up . sri lankans are really struggling to take wickets wiyhout murali

  • on October 26, 2011, 5:05 GMT

    The answer to 20 wickets lies in the raltive strength - the better batting V better bowling, conditional ofcourse to a fair wicket.

    Pakistan achivement in ist test was: Test batting stay power and big score. They cross 500 with a double by the opener. They lost the victory to fielding, but also bad luck. Strange catches some time are taken and dropped by th e best and the weakest fielders. The fact also remains, fairly and squarely that Batter Jaywender's (LBW unquestiionably wrong decision)took the match away from Pakistan at the most crucial stage.

    To Lankans: They proved their batting and fielding strength,, just as their Captain's inning when most needed. They are`psychologically down without their ace spinner Murli. Should he have been around with his action to begin with, will be debated for long time as question of disability of one against handicap of another. CRICKET IS WAR TODAY.

  • Fast_Track_Bully on October 26, 2011, 4:27 GMT

    Srilanka will win the match!

  • on October 26, 2011, 3:00 GMT

    in reply to TeamSelector..............Ajmal is one of the best offspin....u should never take him out.......he is the king of doosra

  • Usman.Shahid on October 26, 2011, 2:37 GMT

    My Team 1.Taufeeq 2. Hafeez 3. Azhar 4. Younis 5. Misbah 6. Adnan 7. Wahab 8. Umar Gul 9. Aizaz 10. Junaid 11. Saeed Ajmal

    We should have 5 front line bowlers to take 20 wickets on this pitch. But still to win a match we need a captain who wants to win. Misbah should be replaced with Hafeez as captain as a captian.

  • johnathonjosephs on October 26, 2011, 2:35 GMT

    Drop Paranavitan. That man is nothing is but bad for Lanka. All he does is slow the innings and get the momentum in the opposition's hands. Promote Dilly up the order to open with Thirimanne and either put Chandimal to replace Parana, or some allrounder. Bowling-wise, I would like to see Pradeep get another chance (he did bowl good in the beginning of 2nd day...) but I think Lakmal, Welegedera, Herath, and Randiv should be chosen. Lanka seems to be bent on their Murali configuration (3 seamers and Murali), but HErath is no Murali. 2 seamer/2 spinners combination is not bad if the spinners are good. A decent spinner is better than a crap seamer anyday, regardless of the configuration. Randiv's height can extract good bounce from the pitch as well. Looks like it will be a 350 pitch, but due to complaints, the pitch curators might make it less batting friendly to a 300 pitch

  • on October 26, 2011, 2:28 GMT

    with current team SL will find it difficult, Paranavitana needs to be dropped so Chandimal can come in and Mahela can open batting, Sl bowling is awefull but they have no better options really so they cant do anything about it they just suck, they struggled to get even 1 wicket last test so they shouldnt even dream of getting 20 wickets.

  • TeamSelector on October 26, 2011, 0:11 GMT

    Most people are saying that Pakistan should make one or two changes, but I think if they really want to win the second Test (as oppose to another draw); then they should make three changes. The first one is easy, Malik for Shafiq. Malik is more experienced, is an additional bowling option, can adapt his game & score quickly if need be & is one of Pakistan's better fielders. The second one is Wahab for Cheema. I think Wahab is a better wicket taker & two left handed seamers might create more problems for SL. Now for the third change ...... since we now have [2] right handed offies in Hafeez & Malik ...... then the logical change should be the leftie Rehman for Ajmal.

    1 Mohammad Hafeez, 2 Taufeeq Umar, 3 Azhar Ali, 4 Younis Khan, 5 Misbah-ul-Haq, 6 Shoaib Malik, 7 Adnan Akmal (wk), 8 Abdur Rehman, 9 Umar Gul, 10 Wahab Riaz, 11 Junaid Khan.

  • xylo on October 25, 2011, 23:38 GMT

    Rakim, what George Binoy is stressing is that the team as a whole did not get the 20 wickets. The bowlers created 25 chances, but chances are not the same as wickets.

  • on October 25, 2011, 22:52 GMT

    Why is everyone criticising Misbah's captaincy? Let us all be realistic. This is not the Australian team of the early 2000. This is Pakistan. They are ranked no.6 at the moment and you cant expect them to chase down 170 runs in 24 overs. A lot of players are relatively new including the openers and need time to settle down. The only team they've beaten in the last 4 years is New Zealand. Once they'll start securing series wins against teams like Eng and SA only then will they have the confidence to adopt an attacking approach.

  • on October 25, 2011, 22:52 GMT

    MENDIS_forever- SL should think a bit about ur name and then act on it....;) Then they might get 20 wickets!

  • playitstraight on October 25, 2011, 22:01 GMT

    Paranavitana needs to be dropped immediately if SL want to win matches. Seriously, the guy takes so slow to score runs and when he does he rarely makes fifties. In his place, Dinesh Chandimal should bat maybe at no.5. nDilshanshouldefinitelyopen, after watching his 193 v England in England, I was very surprised when he said that he wanted to go down to no.5. Suranga Lakmal is another man who needs to be dropped immediately, and make place for Dammika Prasad. Suraj Randiv should be included in in place of Nuwan Pradeep. So pretty much, the SL XI should look like this: Dilshan, Thrimanne, Sanga, Mahela,Chandimal, Prasanna, Matthews, Randiv, Herath, Welegedara, Prasad.

  • hassan13 on October 25, 2011, 21:31 GMT

    Pak took 20 wickets whilst also dropping half a dozen catches even on this pancake. Not a question of if Pak can take wickets but a question of if pak have the stomach for a fight.

  • on October 25, 2011, 21:12 GMT

    Srilankas team is just fine only if they remove fernando and play any other fast bowler maybe .. dhamika prasad.. and dinesh chandimal will do great in place of pranavitna aur might be remove prassana jaywardane and give glove to dinesh.. pakistan sides is also gud but.. so go pakistan and show wat ur made offfff..

  • Rakim on October 25, 2011, 21:04 GMT

    George Binoy, did u even watch 1st match? Pak can't take 20 wickets?LOL, they took 25 wickets dude. The problem for Pak aren't bowlers, its fielders like always

  • on October 25, 2011, 20:35 GMT

    What Pakistan badly doesn't need is Misbahul Haq with his negative approach. There should be an aggressive captain with a positive attitude.

  • on October 25, 2011, 20:01 GMT

    Pakistan will take 20 wickets but it is tough for srilanka to take 20 wickets if Suraj randiv will come then there is a little chance

  • on October 25, 2011, 19:55 GMT

    sri lanka must give oppertunity to dinesh chandimal by dropping paranawithana nuwan pradeep shouldnot drop from 11.randiv should be in eleven by dropping lakmal.mathews also can ball so 2 fast ballers are enough with 2 spin ballers. i am sure this time sri lanka will give good fight to pakistan attack..... good luck sri lankan team.........................

  • on October 25, 2011, 19:07 GMT

    I am in favor of Wahab,he is a nice seamer and got a bright future ahead,was dropped against Zimbabwe which was highly unnecessary,He hasnt played much of cricket recently and should be given chances on regular basis,just being with team is of no advantage.Someone said Malik should be proffered over Asad,I believe malik should be confined to ODI's only,Test cricket demands long stay on wicket and a better technique same time,There has been a question mark over his technique over the years esp when he used to open under Izmam's captaincy.Has scored just one century and if i am not wrong it was against Srilanka in 2006,nothing special except this.Taoufeeq has rally grabbed his chance with both hands,failed against Zimbabwe but has shown this time that he has matured but his inning was a one pace,doesnt change much.

  • on October 25, 2011, 19:00 GMT

    maybe pak shd rest gul nd include w.riaz in playing XI. gul have to take more wickets... he is pak's most experienced bowler..and he needs to shw tht..

  • on October 25, 2011, 18:57 GMT

    Pakistan did take 20 wickets in the first test match. The question is Mr. Binoy, did you watch the last match? @ Aqeel Raja, Malik lacks the skills to be a test player, I'm not proud of how Asad played but I'd pick him over Malik. Secondly If Pakistan does win tomorrow then this will be fastest test match in the hist of test matches... I say they'll win on the 5th day, if they hold their catches or else it'll be another draw.

  • on October 25, 2011, 18:31 GMT

    i think pakistan have a good attacking bowling unit. but sl have good batting line to counter the bowling attack. if sl bat for first session without losing any wickets and scores more than 3 runs per over then its tough for pakistan.

  • MENDIS_Forever on October 25, 2011, 18:21 GMT

    Did I miss something? Pakistan got 20 wickets.our team got only 7.Pradeep is a good bowler,so hope he won't be dropped for the match.

  • on October 25, 2011, 18:08 GMT

    ikbal khan .....we will take your pakistan coach in return for ottis gibson and guest what ...we ll even give you 1 free player darren sammy ..thats right 1 free player

  • on October 25, 2011, 18:08 GMT

    comeon pakistan, dont waste it this time!

  • mgsperera on October 25, 2011, 18:07 GMT

    If SL wants to win they shud go for few changers as such as remove Paranawitharana & Dilshan shud open..put Dinesh Chandimal in n6 slot..remove 1 of 3fast bowlers, better to reomve Suraj Lakmal & put Dhammika prasad..SL shud go for strategicaly changes ...

  • El_Toro_Loco on October 25, 2011, 18:04 GMT

    Pakistan did take 20 wickets in the last test & lost 7 total in both innings. Dunno what georgie boy is talking about?

  • achee on October 25, 2011, 17:50 GMT

    In my opinion test matches shouldnt be held in UAE. All three cricket venues Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah are known for producing unsporting, docile and flat pitches which always result in dull draws. Maybe Sharjah test match might produce a result as Australia thrashed Pakistan over there in 2002 by bowling them out for such low scores such as 53 and 59. I think Sri Lanka might win this series as they have a solid batting line up and Pakistan's batting is always bound to fail atleast once every series.

  • on October 25, 2011, 17:46 GMT

    Where the hell is Dinesh Chandimal?

  • on October 25, 2011, 17:42 GMT

    the header of the article doesnt make any sense, Pakistan did take 20 wickets both the time, while SL failed to do so both tmes.

  • Herath-UK on October 25, 2011, 17:36 GMT

    Sri Lankan commentators suggested to revert Dilshan back to open dropping Paranavithana and to bring in Kosala which seems a good plan.Good Luck to Lanka. Ranil Herath -Kent

  • on October 25, 2011, 17:30 GMT

    Misbah should be ashamed of himself after the last match. Pakistan could easily have had a go for the runs they needed for a win but for some reason decided to just block from the outset. This is the kind of thing that is killing the test format....:(

  • on October 25, 2011, 17:25 GMT

    Pakistan XI team eagerly needs to be changed by the interim coach Mohsin Khan if he would prove himself as a matured trainer. Asad & Aizaz , these two players must be rested & replaced. New inclusion should be Shoaib Malik/ Abdur Rehman & Wahab Riaz.Pakistan team should never ignore & underestimate the Srilankans.

  • on October 25, 2011, 16:56 GMT

    pakistan can easily take 20 wikets there also we have gr8 bwlers and also batsmen getting runs easily it is very encouraging for us

  • on October 25, 2011, 16:50 GMT

    Although Asad Shafiq has a solid defence as a fairly young batsman 1 of 30 balls is just not good enough! Pak could have gone for the runs if they had a few more overs in the bag! Pak's overall run rate in their 1st inning wasnt very good considering the pitch, conditions etc. Even if they had a few less runs and a little more time a result in their favour was there to take!

  • on October 25, 2011, 16:43 GMT

    Pakistan "TOOK" 20 wickets heck it was 25 wickets if catches are included i think the writer was watching an indian team bowling they definitely can not take 20 wickets unless the pitch is made of sand paper and the batting side can not play spin

  • on October 25, 2011, 16:01 GMT

    The headline is misleading. Didn't Pakistan just take 20 wkts in the first match?

  • on October 25, 2011, 15:58 GMT

    Good Luck Pakistan..........

  • on October 25, 2011, 15:45 GMT

    Malik should be included in playing XI. He is an all rounder. He should replace Asad who just wasted too many deliveries. PAK will INSHA ALLAH win tomorrow...

  • TaylorSwift on October 25, 2011, 15:06 GMT

    Wahab Riaz should be selected over Aizaz Cheema. I like Cheema's work ethic, but Riaz is a better wicket taking option. Good luck, lads!

  • on October 25, 2011, 14:55 GMT

    Pakistan needs an aggressive coach

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • on October 25, 2011, 14:55 GMT

    Pakistan needs an aggressive coach

  • TaylorSwift on October 25, 2011, 15:06 GMT

    Wahab Riaz should be selected over Aizaz Cheema. I like Cheema's work ethic, but Riaz is a better wicket taking option. Good luck, lads!

  • on October 25, 2011, 15:45 GMT

    Malik should be included in playing XI. He is an all rounder. He should replace Asad who just wasted too many deliveries. PAK will INSHA ALLAH win tomorrow...

  • on October 25, 2011, 15:58 GMT

    Good Luck Pakistan..........

  • on October 25, 2011, 16:01 GMT

    The headline is misleading. Didn't Pakistan just take 20 wkts in the first match?

  • on October 25, 2011, 16:43 GMT

    Pakistan "TOOK" 20 wickets heck it was 25 wickets if catches are included i think the writer was watching an indian team bowling they definitely can not take 20 wickets unless the pitch is made of sand paper and the batting side can not play spin

  • on October 25, 2011, 16:50 GMT

    Although Asad Shafiq has a solid defence as a fairly young batsman 1 of 30 balls is just not good enough! Pak could have gone for the runs if they had a few more overs in the bag! Pak's overall run rate in their 1st inning wasnt very good considering the pitch, conditions etc. Even if they had a few less runs and a little more time a result in their favour was there to take!

  • on October 25, 2011, 16:56 GMT

    pakistan can easily take 20 wikets there also we have gr8 bwlers and also batsmen getting runs easily it is very encouraging for us

  • on October 25, 2011, 17:25 GMT

    Pakistan XI team eagerly needs to be changed by the interim coach Mohsin Khan if he would prove himself as a matured trainer. Asad & Aizaz , these two players must be rested & replaced. New inclusion should be Shoaib Malik/ Abdur Rehman & Wahab Riaz.Pakistan team should never ignore & underestimate the Srilankans.

  • on October 25, 2011, 17:30 GMT

    Misbah should be ashamed of himself after the last match. Pakistan could easily have had a go for the runs they needed for a win but for some reason decided to just block from the outset. This is the kind of thing that is killing the test format....:(