Opening highs for Sri Lanka
It was a Test match to remember for Sri Lanka, especially their openers and fast bowlers. Stats highlights from their win
- The nine-wicket win is Sri Lanka's first in an away or neutral venue Test against Pakistan since 2004, when they won by 201 runs in Faisalabad. Since then, they'd lost twice and drawn five Tests in away or neutral venues against Pakistan.
- Since February 2009, this is only Sri Lanka's second Test win in 19 away Tests - they've lost nine and drawn eight during this period. Their only other victory was a superb one by 208 runs against South Africa in Durban.
- Pakistan have now lost two successive Tests in Dubai. In October last year they lost to South Africa by an innings and 92 runs. Before that defeat, they'd won three out of four.
- Of the five Tests which've produced a result in Dubai, four have been won by the team batting second. The average runs per wicket in the first innings here is 19.56; in the next three innings it's 33.91, 35, and 56.06.
- Sri Lanka's pace attack picked up 15 wickets in the Test, and averaged 22.86 runs per wicket. Only five times has a Sri Lankan pace attack taken more wickets in a Test, and the last time it happened was in November 2001, in Colombo (SSC) against West Indies, when the seamers picked up 16. The four previous instances were all before February 1992.
- Suranga Lakmal's match haul of 6 for 123, and his haul of 4 for 78 in the second innings, are both his best in a Test. Before this Test, he had never taken more than four in a Test, or more than three in an innings.
- The 124-run partnership between Kaushal Silva and Dimuth Karunaratne was Sri Lanka's first century stand for the opening wicket since June 2011, when Tillakaratne Dilshan and Tharanga Paranavitana added 207 at Lord's. Since that Lord's Test and before this one, in 47 partnerships Sri Lanka's opening pairs had averaged 28.02, with a highest of 93. This is also only the third time Sri Lanka's openers have added a century stand in the fourth innings of a Test.
- Silva and Karunaratne scored three fifties in the match, which is only the sixth instance of Sri Lanka's openers making three 50-plus scores in the same Test, and the first since December 2009, when Paranavitana and Dilshan had achieved the feat against India in Mumbai.
- One of the few positives for Pakistan was Sarfraz Ahmed's batting in the second innings. His 74 is the highest by a Pakistan wicketkeeper since Zulqarnain Haider's 88 against England at Edgbaston in August 2010. Since that Test, Pakistan's wicketkeepers have averaged 20.10, the poorest among all teams. They've managed only four half-centuries in 45 innings, and the only team apart from Zimbabwe with no centuries from their wicketkeepers. South Africa's wicketkeepers have averaged 47.61, Bangladesh's 42.63 and England's 38.31 in the same period. (Click here for the complete list.)
- Mahela Jaywardene's Man-of-the-Match is the 11th of his Test career, thus equalling Aravinda de Silva's mark. Among Sri Lankans, only Kumar Sangakkara (15) and Muttiah Muralitharan (19) have won more such awards.
S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo. Follow him on Twitter
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