Pakistan v Sri Lanka, 3rd Test, Sharjah, 1st day January 16, 2014

Ajmal finds form in slow battle

115

Sri Lanka 220 for 5 (Sangakkara 52, Ajmal 2-62) v Pakistan
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

The Sharjah surface - largely devoid of pace, lateral movement and turn - provided the setting for a game of patience on the first day of the deciding Test of the series. Sri Lanka, needing only a draw to win their first away series since 1999-00 (excluding those in Bangladesh and Zimbabwe), batted with caution to wear the bowlers down on a pitch that was not conducive for shot making because of its slowness.

Pakistan's attack, however, was resolute and remained accurate throughout. The upshot was a stalemate of sorts, with a run-rate of 2.44 and only five wickets falling in 90 overs.

Pakistan's spinners played a defining role. 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.

Pakistan's biggest gain, however, was Saeed Ajmal's return to form. Having taken only five wickets in 114.2 ovrs in the first two Tests, Ajmal was wicketless for 17 overs today before he inflicted two quick blows to severely erode Sri Lanka's position. Ajmal also tested the batsmen consistently with his flight and variations, and had an economy rate of only 2.13 after 29 overs.

Misbah-ul-Haq's team would have had a better day, too, had they had more luck with umpire decisions and used the review system cleverly. They reviewed not-out lbw decisions against Dimuth Karunaratne and Angelo Mathews, but replays ruled in favour of the batsman by narrow margins. Had either of those appeals, from Ajmal and Rehman, been upheld by the on-field umpire, those decisions would not have been overturned had the batsmen asked for a review.

The Mathews moment was Pakistan's 13th failed review, out of 14 in this series. They also had an out decision overturned when replays indicated, quite bizarrely, that the ball would have passed high over the stumps, after Prasanna Jayawardene had been struck below the knee roll by Ajmal. The batsman had made a long stride forward but the predicted bounce was of a degree not consistent with what had been seen before on this surface.

And then there were the missed opportunities. Three deliveries after the failed review against Karunaratne, and before the batsman had added to his 14, he inside-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. On 15, Sangakkara 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. Sangakkara went on to make 52.

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. That Pakistan's resolve did not waver despite those setbacks was to their credit, considering the pitch.

The early signs for the fast bowlers weren't encouraging. With the new ball doing nothing off a good length, they resorted to bouncing the batsmen to try and unsettle them. Pakistan made the first breakthrough when Talha, playing his first match since his debut in the terror-stricken Test in Lahore in 2009, was brought back for his second spell, after Junaid had bowled seven consecutive overs on a sunny day. Running in hard, he got a couple of balls to straighten off the pitch and one of them took the edge of Kaushal Silva's bat, ending the opening stand on 31.

Rehman had bowled only two overs in the first session and he struck immediately after the break, beating Karunaratne in the flight to induce an edge to first slip. Mahela Jayawardene, his split webbing not yet fully healed, came in at 65 for 2 to forge a 60-run stand with Sangakkara.

The next breakthrough came out of the blue, after Sangakkara had just passed 50 with a classy straight drive off Junaid. Two balls later he flicked firmly, but also uppishly, and Khurram Manzoor held the catch at midwicket.

The first two sessions had yielded only 133 runs in 57 overs but Mahela was far more aggressive after tea, accelerating towards a half-century. He did not get there, though, because Ajmal induced an inside edge that lobbed off the pad to short leg. Shortly afterwards, Dinesh Chandimal mis-hit a doosra from Ajmal and was caught by Asad Shafiq running back from mid-on. Sri Lanka had lost three wickets for 41.

Mathews and Prasanna prevented against any further damage by painstakingly adding 54 runs in 24.4 overs. Both batsmen were beaten by Junaid's reverse swing, though, and fortunate to survive reviews against the spinners. How long they, and Sri Lanka's tail, last on the second day could shape the result of the series.

George Binoy is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Gamaraala on January 22, 2014, 23:54 GMT

    VKohlitheGreat: Just to refresh the memory, search "Sanga walks to a salute" online. That was an IPL match where there's no DRS. Sanga could've easily stayed. Where as this match did have DRS, umpire wasn't convinced and Pakistan players weren't confident to use their review. Saurav Ganguly once told a press conference that he was not a walker and justified this policy by saying "I have been given out a number of times when I was not, so you have got to make up at some stage". May be same crossed Sanga's mind.

  • SriLankanYoungBlood on January 17, 2014, 9:25 GMT

    @CricSriLanka Check following Statics Most runs Angelo Mathews 357 Kaushal Silva 271 Younis Khan 239 Misbah-ul-Haq 233 FDM Karunaratne 190 DPMD Jayawardene (SL) 181 KC Sangakkara 158 What happened to your favorite Sanga and Mahela both r 7 and 6 in the Most Run Scorers list. I agree Prasanna played loose shot and get out then what do u say about Sanga's out. it isn't loose shot?.clearly it's d worst shot played in that match. @BladeRunner I think before degrading our youngsters check following link http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/records/batting/most_runs_career.html?id=8407;type=series U can understand how well SL youngsters played compare with your favorite old horses Mahela and Sanga.

  • Blade-Runner on January 17, 2014, 8:55 GMT

    @TommytuckerSaffa ; What a stupid comment that is. "Teams need to be scoring at a minimum of 3 runs per over to be considered as top tier teams" lol Hey, you are a saffa,right ?? Why don't come to Sri Lanka 'n check if you are really a top tier team ??

  • Sports4Youth on January 17, 2014, 8:52 GMT

    One pathetic player (HAFEEZ) replaced by another one (AZHAR). What difference will it make. When the Sri Lankans are batting we are being told that the pitch has gone to sleep. But when the Pakistanis will come out to bat we will be told that the pitch has started doing something. The fact is that if you look at the match closely, the Sri Lanka are really working hard and applying themselves. I think by now it is clear that Pakistan is loosing this match, because in the last 3 years we have seen that they do not have the capacity to draw a match.

    Averages - - - Test - - - Frist class

    M.HAFEEZ - - - 33.96 - 34.84

    AZHAR Ali - - 38.53 - 36.18

    ASAD Shafiq - 37.08 - 38.44

    FAWAD Alam - 41.66 - 55.75

    HARIS Sohail - - - - - - 52.01

    Accoridig to these figures the guys at the top three should not be in the team and the last two guys should be in, But they are not.

    ESPNCricinfo, please publish.

  • on January 17, 2014, 8:39 GMT

    you know what, if both jayawardene and sanga calls it a day together, the srilankan team would be a big zero in their batting department. It would be worse than india without sachin/dravid/laxman .

  • yorkslanka on January 17, 2014, 8:37 GMT

    Well played by Mathews and Perera, 300 up and we still looking ok. If we can get to 350 then that is a very good innings on this track. Again as i said before, this is not an easy track to bat on..Unlucky Pakistan had used up there referrals as they could have got a few wickets had they kept them in hand..keep going Mathews and Lanka...

  • MichaelBurton on January 17, 2014, 8:35 GMT

    It is not a surprise that we never won the ICC Spirit of the Award which SLteam, Mahela twise and Great Sanga once won. This award is only for the gentlemen who preserve the spirit of the game.

  • on January 17, 2014, 8:35 GMT

    This is more like 1990s test cricket , both teams playing like they just want to play it out 5 days for some ones sake .Oh come on, 220/5 in one day and still playing like they got 6 days left ,I gotta say its damn boring

  • Lion_96 on January 17, 2014, 8:32 GMT

    Have to say, im a bit disappointed in the way Sri Lankans have batted in this Test.Pakistan have bowled well, but it seems like we are playing for draw right from the moment Angelo Mathews won the toss. I reckon Don Bradman scored at a faster rate than this.

    Thats the problem with us Asians, the moment we take a lead in the series, we dont want to push on for more wins. Wasim Akram once put it quite accurately when he said "In our culture, we get satisfied too easily". Regardless of what people say abt the Aussies, the one thing i have always admired about them is the fact that always look to win every match as possible. If we are to be top Test Team we gotta look to win every Test Match

  • TommytuckerSaffa on January 17, 2014, 8:12 GMT

    Teams need to be scoring at a minimum of 3 runs per over to be considered as top tier teams. This slow batting is killing test cricket.

  • Gamaraala on January 22, 2014, 23:54 GMT

    VKohlitheGreat: Just to refresh the memory, search "Sanga walks to a salute" online. That was an IPL match where there's no DRS. Sanga could've easily stayed. Where as this match did have DRS, umpire wasn't convinced and Pakistan players weren't confident to use their review. Saurav Ganguly once told a press conference that he was not a walker and justified this policy by saying "I have been given out a number of times when I was not, so you have got to make up at some stage". May be same crossed Sanga's mind.

  • SriLankanYoungBlood on January 17, 2014, 9:25 GMT

    @CricSriLanka Check following Statics Most runs Angelo Mathews 357 Kaushal Silva 271 Younis Khan 239 Misbah-ul-Haq 233 FDM Karunaratne 190 DPMD Jayawardene (SL) 181 KC Sangakkara 158 What happened to your favorite Sanga and Mahela both r 7 and 6 in the Most Run Scorers list. I agree Prasanna played loose shot and get out then what do u say about Sanga's out. it isn't loose shot?.clearly it's d worst shot played in that match. @BladeRunner I think before degrading our youngsters check following link http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/records/batting/most_runs_career.html?id=8407;type=series U can understand how well SL youngsters played compare with your favorite old horses Mahela and Sanga.

  • Blade-Runner on January 17, 2014, 8:55 GMT

    @TommytuckerSaffa ; What a stupid comment that is. "Teams need to be scoring at a minimum of 3 runs per over to be considered as top tier teams" lol Hey, you are a saffa,right ?? Why don't come to Sri Lanka 'n check if you are really a top tier team ??

  • Sports4Youth on January 17, 2014, 8:52 GMT

    One pathetic player (HAFEEZ) replaced by another one (AZHAR). What difference will it make. When the Sri Lankans are batting we are being told that the pitch has gone to sleep. But when the Pakistanis will come out to bat we will be told that the pitch has started doing something. The fact is that if you look at the match closely, the Sri Lanka are really working hard and applying themselves. I think by now it is clear that Pakistan is loosing this match, because in the last 3 years we have seen that they do not have the capacity to draw a match.

    Averages - - - Test - - - Frist class

    M.HAFEEZ - - - 33.96 - 34.84

    AZHAR Ali - - 38.53 - 36.18

    ASAD Shafiq - 37.08 - 38.44

    FAWAD Alam - 41.66 - 55.75

    HARIS Sohail - - - - - - 52.01

    Accoridig to these figures the guys at the top three should not be in the team and the last two guys should be in, But they are not.

    ESPNCricinfo, please publish.

  • on January 17, 2014, 8:39 GMT

    you know what, if both jayawardene and sanga calls it a day together, the srilankan team would be a big zero in their batting department. It would be worse than india without sachin/dravid/laxman .

  • yorkslanka on January 17, 2014, 8:37 GMT

    Well played by Mathews and Perera, 300 up and we still looking ok. If we can get to 350 then that is a very good innings on this track. Again as i said before, this is not an easy track to bat on..Unlucky Pakistan had used up there referrals as they could have got a few wickets had they kept them in hand..keep going Mathews and Lanka...

  • MichaelBurton on January 17, 2014, 8:35 GMT

    It is not a surprise that we never won the ICC Spirit of the Award which SLteam, Mahela twise and Great Sanga once won. This award is only for the gentlemen who preserve the spirit of the game.

  • on January 17, 2014, 8:35 GMT

    This is more like 1990s test cricket , both teams playing like they just want to play it out 5 days for some ones sake .Oh come on, 220/5 in one day and still playing like they got 6 days left ,I gotta say its damn boring

  • Lion_96 on January 17, 2014, 8:32 GMT

    Have to say, im a bit disappointed in the way Sri Lankans have batted in this Test.Pakistan have bowled well, but it seems like we are playing for draw right from the moment Angelo Mathews won the toss. I reckon Don Bradman scored at a faster rate than this.

    Thats the problem with us Asians, the moment we take a lead in the series, we dont want to push on for more wins. Wasim Akram once put it quite accurately when he said "In our culture, we get satisfied too easily". Regardless of what people say abt the Aussies, the one thing i have always admired about them is the fact that always look to win every match as possible. If we are to be top Test Team we gotta look to win every Test Match

  • TommytuckerSaffa on January 17, 2014, 8:12 GMT

    Teams need to be scoring at a minimum of 3 runs per over to be considered as top tier teams. This slow batting is killing test cricket.

  • Bdcricketdebator on January 17, 2014, 8:11 GMT

    @blade runner,you think we dont have youngsters who can score 100?then what about silva?he was close to 100 twice.stop making ur own country look foolish.and about this pitch.we can judge about pitch only after pak bat .okay.

  • on January 17, 2014, 8:10 GMT

    Samsor did you watch the SA Vs In 2nd test match that's what I call a boring test match!

  • on January 17, 2014, 8:07 GMT

    SL on course for 380 as predicted! Needs to occupy the crease regardless of the run rate which will ensure that there can be only one winner in this test!

  • Blade-Runner on January 17, 2014, 8:00 GMT

    @ ShahidJK; We're already 1-0 as far as the series win is concerned. So, we're in a very good winning position. What are you on about ? I guess that your team got bowled out for 168 odds in the last game due to that winning attitude. right ?? lol. Pls...

  • on January 17, 2014, 7:52 GMT

    Very substandard umpiring Both umpires are favouring Srilanka and this may cost Pakistan the match and their performance should be reviewed by ICC Especially Ravi from India is against Pakistan and should not stand in test matches Javed

  • yorkslanka on January 17, 2014, 7:48 GMT

    @rezauk- well said my friend, you are absolutely correct. Those who are criticising dont do it through any sort of cricket knowledge, its just selected indians who will criticise SL irrespective of the situation.TBH their opinion doesnt concern us in the slightest as they lose any respect for themselves with each stupid post.. ..ANYONE who has even the smallest bit of cricket knowledge knows ( as you say ) that the fact is the more time we take toabt, the less time is available to Pakistan and therefore the higher the pressure on scoring quickly. This then gives us more opportunities to take wickets..comments alike yours are why we SL's respect Pakistan fans and know you are our cricketing brothers @my fellow SL fans-ignore trolls and let them speak to themselves!!

  • rezauk on January 17, 2014, 7:14 GMT

    I'm surprised people are critical of SL. They have applied themselves superbly and have accumulated runs. Their additional patience allowed them to save the 1st test and win the 2nd. They are also using up valuable time and will believe that if they bowl length and line then Pakistan will make errors. Pakistan on the other hand will need to score at a reasonable pace and will do well to take a substantial 1st innings lead in the hope they don't need to chase many in the 4th innings. My biggest concern is that SL have played with freedom & determination which has sadly been missing from Pakistan for a long time now.

  • CricSriLanka on January 17, 2014, 6:33 GMT

    @SriLankanYoungBlood: there goes your positive stroke maker, prasanna for a expensive shot. you need patients and stay at the wicket and dispatch the lose ball.

  • Yousafahmed11 on January 17, 2014, 6:16 GMT

    RIP test cricket in Srilanka!. It is pity that our senior batsmen with plenty of experience in such tracks not able to score a 100 or a 150! Forget about youngsters as everyone knows we donot have good youngsters in our team. Even an average sub continent batsman can score double ton on this pitch. How can we call such players as lions!

  • on January 17, 2014, 6:01 GMT

    at maruthudelft: playing a game is not to make fans happy. a true cricket lover who knows the game well, vl be happy by watching a calm proper test inning, what Mathews played.

  • Fast_Track_Bully on January 17, 2014, 5:46 GMT

    I think, the legendary players are decided for a draw before the match. Look at their approach! They are trying to win against a top ranking team which they never achieved in recent times! Clearly SL test team is a joke.In the last 10 series Srilanka won only against Pakistan and BD at home - that too 1-0 only! No wonder they are not able to term as 'Flat Track Fully'!. Need to find another term for them.

  • CricSriLanka on January 17, 2014, 5:41 GMT

    @ all those say that SL innings is slow - Read the article it says "pitch that was not conducive for shot making because of its slowness" and "game of patience on the first day". So this is not an easy strip to bat on. But it is intriguing Test Match cricket at its best. It is similar to those Ashes matches, played on fast bouncy tracks in Aus but here it is slow, turning and reverse swinging track. Batsman will have to be really adaptive to spin bowling and slow tracks to be successful...

  • Bdcricketdebator on January 17, 2014, 5:07 GMT

    @shahidjk,hey man mind ur own bussiness.do not worry about srilanka.they have won the 1st test so why rush for a win when u know u can win the series even if u draw.pk should push for win.i hope u understand this simple strategy.

  • ajithabey on January 17, 2014, 5:05 GMT

    The top order SL batsmen all got into double figures but could not capitalize on the conditions thanks to some tight bowling by Pakistan. If Mathews and Jayawardena can post a total of 350 + Pakistan will have to bat really well to make a match of it especially as they have to bat on the fourth innings on a pitch which looks like a dust bowl already with odd bounce. Hopefully Herath and Dilruwan can exploit the conditions in the next couple of days. The match itself is interestingly poised for a close finish.

  • Philippe on January 17, 2014, 4:23 GMT

    its difficult to change the attitude of SL team. they never play for win in tests.

  • MaruthuDelft on January 17, 2014, 3:29 GMT

    Matthews is too slow. Players like him are the reason for demise of test cricket. Anything less than a 50% strike rate over 2 hours would bore even a keen cricket fan.

  • Resultpredictor on January 17, 2014, 1:30 GMT

    Mathews and Prasanna are well set and it will be very tough to break this partnership. SL will score more than 350 and this is match winning score on this pitch. Pakistan any how lost this match and series. Pak have to play their skins out to draw this match otherwise SL will easily win this match. Pak cannot win this match, its fate of Pakistan cricket team, and its bound to happen.

  • on January 17, 2014, 0:21 GMT

    Two of the most boring teams in test cricket. 220, 198, 205..... on full day of test is a shame, and not worthy of world class cricket.

  • on January 16, 2014, 22:54 GMT

    No ifs and buts SL will score 380 tomorrow and Herath will have a field day!

  • jb633 on January 16, 2014, 22:32 GMT

    chechong014, no mate you are dead right. Tbh whilst I can watch any format of cricket the only one I care about is test cricket and yet it every country bar Eng/ Aus grounds are half empty. It is a huge worry as financially it does not seem a valid model and how long will it continue. My biggest fear as a fan of English cricket is the idea that come 15 years the only test cricket that will be played will be the ashes. The back to back recently concluded is a dreadful idea and i would hate if other nations stopped participating. I am not sure how you can solve the problem though, maybe day night cricket so people can watch after work. I am not sure what ticket prices are like globally so I can't comment on that being a reason. Whatever happens the ICC must act quickly before it's too late.

  • dsig3 on January 16, 2014, 22:31 GMT

    2.0 runs per over? Only one team playing to win. Sri-Lanka will always be minnows unless they lift their ambitions. Pathetic cricket.

  • on January 16, 2014, 22:03 GMT

    Team Pakistan would have been in much stronger position but for poor fielding and misuse of DRS (even though if umpire had given it out in the first place and SL used DRS it would have gone in favour of Pakistan), non use of DRS (Sangakara) and SL's successful use of DRS (when umpires decision was in favour of Pakistan). Drop of Matthews on zero by Talha could be costly as he is now 24 not out. Please that Azhar Ali was selected instead of Hafeez. Manzoor, Shehzad and Shafiq need to show in this test match they are good enough to be in the team otherwise Umar Akmal and Junaid Jamshed should be considered. My XI could be 1. Jamshed, 2. Azhar, 3. Possibly Shafiq, 4. Younis, 5. Misbah, 6. Umar, 7. Sarfraz / Kamran, 8. Bhatti / Rehman (depending on the wicket), 9. Gul, 10. Ajmal / Rehman, 11. Junaid.

  • on January 16, 2014, 21:21 GMT

    Two of the most boring teams in test cricket. 220, 198, 205....... in one full day of test cricket is shame.

  • on January 16, 2014, 20:38 GMT

    "Wicket of Mathew's is the key" for pakistan step toward test success . Strict deprival of runs is needed to get srilankan batsman on foot , to try something new and alternatively more chance of wicket success with srilanka having scored minimal tommarow. pk team goal should be srilanka all out tommarow under 250-270 at the end of day and pakistan first batting pair with 50 on board without any wickets loss and third day should score 400 runs and 4th complete 500 with quick runs and hand the game back to srilanka batsman there on now two days to get srilanka batsman out thus srilanka under pressure to survive and pakistan should try getting the key wickets on day 4 (suppose 4 srilanka batsman out) without letting them score much (under100 runs) and last day should be panick day for the guest team loosing all its wickets and a win for the hosts. This should result in a series draw for the guests . Good Luck with thoughts , tests are a test of patience lol thats why so few watch it.

  • Rohit... on January 16, 2014, 20:16 GMT

    Pakistan playing with 2 spinners... What are they thinking? Moreover this is the kind of pitch where they need Hafeez the most... he is much comfortable in a slow & turning track where there is no threat of fast bowlers...If nothing works, at least his spin would have helped

  • chechong0114 on January 16, 2014, 19:47 GMT

    By now I know that I sound like a broken record and may make a lot of people upset but I have to admit that I am very passionate about the game of cricket and really believe that this sport has a lot of potential. My thing is, how a game that has been around for so long continue to be so poorly attended by people at major tournaments throughout the world. There has to be a way to end this slump that has been plaguing this great game for such a long time. I mean the first day of a test match in what to me is one of the best match ups in international cricket and there is barely anyone at the ground. This trend needs to be seriously looked into, I mean like STATE OF EMERGENCY serious. How is a sport suppose to sustain itself if it is only making enough money to do just that each fiscal year, it just does not make any sense. There has to be a winning remedy HAS TO! It is time that some of these boards begin to come together and help each other on the aspect of MONEY and that must be now.

  • on January 16, 2014, 19:30 GMT

    pakistan Need To Bowl Out Them Under 250 otherwise This Will Make Huge plus For Srilanka

  • on January 16, 2014, 19:01 GMT

    Nice To See Ajmal Back In Form And Get Couple Of Wickets this Is Good Day of cricket For Both Of Sides

  • t20cric on January 16, 2014, 18:48 GMT

    Pretty even at the end of the day but since SL is 1 up already they have the advantage at this point. Nice to see a much stronger bowling attack. Now I think Talha should get a long run in tests & they could also give Sadaf hussain a chance in tests to form a good pace trio of Junaid-Talha-Sadaf. Rehman bowled pretty well & with Rehman's support the old Ajmal is back. Although the fact that Ajmal needed support on the other end may mean he won't be considered a great once he retires. The fate of this match (and series) will be decided based on how much the rest of SL batsmen make & how well our top 3 perform. Pakistan really need to bowl well & not let SL get even close to 300 while also batting good & scoring atleast 300 (or whatever gets them a lead of atleast 50-70+ runs) then they need to get SL all out for very little in the 2nd innings & bat snesibly to finish the match off. Obviously this is easier said then done & with an unpredictable team like Pakistan you never know.

  • on January 16, 2014, 18:38 GMT

    I predict this will be a drawn game.. signs are indicating a boring lack luster test match in making.. i hope i am proven wrong and Pakistan can come back strong and win it

  • rezauk on January 16, 2014, 18:32 GMT

    Only saw the pre lunch session and have just got the end of play score. SL have applied themselves again to be there at the end of the day. Test cricket isn't about reacting halfway through a series it begins from day 1 ball 1. With reference to Sanga I've already seen enough of his gamesmanship earlier in the series and he would have been a natural pick for Australia.

  • on January 16, 2014, 18:28 GMT

    time to dropped for chandimal he is not in form all of the format. his atart test 2 fifties in sa soil. but now his batting is worst.ex.t20 Average 13 wha he is t2o captain for sl strike rate 90 . Dilsan munawera is better than him i thinnk bangaladesh seris end of chandimal cricket. lol

  • on January 16, 2014, 18:24 GMT

    Well. I think first session of 2nd day will be the real decider of the game. If Pakistan Bowl out Srilanka cheaply with in first session then a definite lead of 200 can crunch the game in Pakistan fovour.With this best team combination i am suprised that Srilanka is not cleaned up today. However credit goes to the last batting pair who just deprived the Pakistan from sneaking through the middle order. Well done again Mr. MAthew for reviving the Misbah Tukism in the match.

  • jerryman on January 16, 2014, 18:23 GMT

    Chandimal does not have the temperament for test cricket . Need a middle order batting all rounder . Perhaps Angelo perera should be given a chance in the middle order.. this seems to the weakest link .. Was a difficult wicket to bat on , I think this will be quite difficult to bat on days 4 & 5 , judging from the turn it is taking on day 1 . This test is also going to have a result , a draw very unlikely. SL batsmen will need to grind the bowlers a fair bit and try to get over 300 ...The ball keeping low may assist Matthews type of bowling ..

  • on January 16, 2014, 18:15 GMT

    Taha is another superb bowler with pace ,control and that too on a unhelpful pitch.I would love to see all these new generation of fast bowlers on bouncy or green wickets.On a helpful pitch most teams will struggle to score more than 250 against these bowlers.Even Gul will struggle to find a spot in test team and so will Aamir with choice of qualty fast bowlers. No such luck with batsmen and even the ones with some class are not given a chance, like 2 Masoods .

  • HabeebRaja786 on January 16, 2014, 18:01 GMT

    If SL score 300 they are in a winning position..Batting is main worry for Pakistan.Time and again everyone is saying Khurram is not a test standard but still he will get best of chances .I mean pitches and opposition both are easy.When it will come to difficult tours Umer Ameen, Sohaib Maqsood and Shan Masood will guven a chance.

  • mensan on January 16, 2014, 17:52 GMT

    Pakistan should wrap SL innings up before lunch on day 2.

  • yorkslanka on January 16, 2014, 17:48 GMT

    having seen a bit of this today before i had to go to work, i think 300 on this wicket will be a very competitive score..this is by no means and easy wicket to bat on and will get harder through the match i think. lots of people asking why Sanga didnt walk, do you know that he was 100%sure where the ball had struck him? If he did then yes he should have walked but how do YOU know if he knew?i have batted before and the opposition claimed i edged it but i was adamant i didnt and the umpire couldnt tell so that was that..again back to the DRS use it correctly or lose out...

  • on January 16, 2014, 17:31 GMT

    Muhammad it's called grinding the opposition down. That's what teams do when they are one up in the series and wants to win the next game as well. SL is expecting Pakistan to play harry carry and gift the game to them!

  • on January 16, 2014, 17:26 GMT

    I think SL would be happy with the end of the day score of 220-5. All they need to do is to take one session at a time and get to a score of about 380 by 10 overs after tea and then they could perhaps take 3 quick wickets by the end of the day which will put them in a commanding position on day three. If Pakistan wants to Square the series then they have to do all the hard work. SL is already one up! Pakistanis seems to forget that.

  • SriLankanYoungBlood on January 16, 2014, 17:20 GMT

    In the Morning most SL fans told Sanga will get 100 or 200. But finally end up with 52. So Pls SL Fans understand the reality first.Player who got maximum runs of 55 in 3 innings in Batsmen friendly track get a 200 in a spinning track with current world best spinner playing.Impossible. Overall negative play from all SL batsmen other than PrasannaJ. Hopefully tomorrow we might see some positive cricket from SL.

  • on January 16, 2014, 17:19 GMT

    I cricPanther needs to be reminded of test fundamentals. SL has already won a test and don't need to try too hard to win this one. Especially when the wicket has been doctored to suit Pakistan bowlers. Therefore the name of the game is to ware the Pakistani bowlers down as much as possible. Run rate does not matter one iota!

  • TheKeeper on January 16, 2014, 17:19 GMT

    Sri Lanka played very well today and given the series situation are now on top. If Pakistan don't bat well in their first innings it will be all over and Sri Lanka will win the game. It was a difficult wicket to bat on and SL batted diligently to see out the day. They are the first team in this series to bat out the first day without folding and that speaks volumes to their discipline and determination. The score line doesn't really reflect the reality of the game, but surely reflects the true nature of the pitch. It is a slow wicket and doesn't come-on to the bat, making playing through the line dangerous.

  • on January 16, 2014, 16:38 GMT

    I really thought that Rehman had Mathews LBW, it was a good decision by the umpire in the end though; it could have gone either ways. I just want to know if the questioning by Rehman to Umpire Kettleborough is good or bad. That was a crucial decision, as shown by both sides' reaction in the dressing room. But this match is shaping up to be a good one batmen toil and bowlers toil even harder. Glad to see Ajmal's return to form, Sangakkara's exquisite batting, and Mahela's slog-sweep six off Ajmal.

  • on January 16, 2014, 16:33 GMT

    what is wrong with chandimal?

  • on January 16, 2014, 16:10 GMT

    220 in 90 overs.... and people say misbah has the worst strike rate

  • jimmyvida on January 16, 2014, 16:04 GMT

    Looked at the last hour of play. Horrid batting display. Half volleys and long hops treated with respect. Batsmen seem to be going on the defensive even before the ball is bowled. There is so much fear/respect for Ajmal that when he bowls bad balls they are not put away. After playing him for so long batsmen seem unable to pick the doosra. Imagine if he starts getting some turn. Are these wickets mud turf or turf mud.No test cricket on pitches like these. How about it ICC?

  • on January 16, 2014, 16:04 GMT

    Well Well Well...The match is evenly poised at this stage. If srilanka will past 300 runs tomorrow then they will take the series 2-0. In any other case Pakistan Win or draw are the possible results. Inclusion of rehman is handy as we have seen it today. No leekege of runs as Bilawal Bhatti did. Boys this is the best team on papers and practically ofr test at this moment by the given resources. Lets see...

  • on January 16, 2014, 15:54 GMT

    Even day for both teams but good day for Saeed Ajmal. Mathews is hope for SriLanka because he is inform batsman. Pakistani bowlers should go with full strength to get him early tomorrow. Azhar and Asad should perform well to save the series

  • on January 16, 2014, 15:47 GMT

    Guys you have to give credit to the pakistani bowling they were bowling extremely tight lines when the Lankans tried to play agressively they lost their wicket.Eg:- Sangakkara and chandimal. This pitch is hard to bat on and Sri lanka got the best batting Conditions.Our bowlers will have to find the right length and restrict their scoring opportunities as well-Luckily we are playing against Pakistan and not Against SA whose batting is awesome-So if we dimiss the first three batsmen cheaply,Misbah will go into a shell and we have every chance of dismissing him-Younus plays careless shots earli in the innings-So pakistan can be dismissed for around 200(herath left arm bowler bowling to 11 right handed batsmen will also play a major role)

  • Fogu on January 16, 2014, 15:47 GMT

    This is not a bad advertisement for test cricket. This test delivers all the nuances of test cricket. Matthews and Prasanna had to fight like crazy to stay put so that PK doesn't bowl them out and PK used every trick to try to uproot them. Fasntastic 1st day. It will only get better. PK does need to bowl out SL for less than 275 or it will tough for them since they are batting second.

  • VKohlitheGreat on January 16, 2014, 15:37 GMT

    @ yorkslanka : For the gentleman's game that it is called, there is also something called as walking but who are we expecting it from. Talk about gentleman's game and it reminds me of Courtney Walsh. #WhatAMan

  • Prabhash1985 on January 16, 2014, 15:21 GMT

    We expected a ton from Sanga. You disappointed us Sanga!!! Come on!!! Do something better!!!

  • Prabhash1985 on January 16, 2014, 15:12 GMT

    2 runs per over is enough, keep calm, and go for a long lasting innings. In one side, it will at least lead to a draw. In a better case, they can put up a good score like 300 in 50 more overs. If you give one of the wickets away, then it's going to be tough for Sri Lanka.

  • Solid_Snake on January 16, 2014, 15:12 GMT

    @ mzm149:Hafeez does not fit in test team.He simply disturbs the team combination.He cant bat,cant bowl..So what's his use in the team

  • yorkslanka on January 16, 2014, 15:09 GMT

    @ fezz- that is unfortunate my friend but that is exactly what the DRS is for...if Pakistan reviewed the gloved catch they would have got it..they can only blame themselves..

  • cricpanther on January 16, 2014, 15:05 GMT

    I don't know when the Srilankans understand the cricket fundamentals and requirements and sense of urgency. It's not about technique, its about understanding the timings!! 5 for 220 runs...not at all good enough, from here Srilanka wants more 220 runs. And make sure total should be 450 runs at least or eat more balls to draw the game if they fees not capable to win this test match and that's the way they can win the series. Every time, Srilanka short of few inches from required performance....whether its batting or bowling and taking wickets. What's going on there??

  • on January 16, 2014, 15:00 GMT

    Sri Lanka threw couple of wickets away but still had the commitment to bat out the day on a slow surface. Sri Lanka needs to bat atleast one and a half a session tomorrow to get a decent score. Looks like a result oriented match

  • Fezz on January 16, 2014, 14:59 GMT

    Everybody is talking about how slow and dead the pitch is. How about umpiring ? If on a pitch like this, umpires don't give LBW decisions when the ball is hitting the leg stump, or give catch out decision when the batsman has gloved the ball, the bowlers will have to get about 15 wickets to dismiss the batting team. It's giving a huge advantage to the batting team who are already batting in the best batting conditions of the match

  • Lion83 on January 16, 2014, 14:55 GMT

    300 in the first innings will be very challenging score considering the nature of the wicket. with bowl turning and reversing it will be a tough going for even pakistan batsmen who look uncertain apart from younis and Misbah.

  • LoveLanka on January 16, 2014, 14:37 GMT

    When SL were 166/5 in 65 overs PAK could have easily run through the rest of the batting line up if Mathews & Prasanna didn't deliver what the situation demands and make sure the first innings wont wrap up before the end of first day just like it happened during the first two tests. that 22 overs before PAK take the new ball SL were moving almost 1 run per over, but they just did what they should have done. i am really impressed. but after the new ball they scored 14 runs in last 3 overs. what i am trying to say is that SL is set to make a good score here with some more sensible cricket tomorrow.

  • CricketChat on January 16, 2014, 14:10 GMT

    Scores around 200-240 in a full day's play of 90 overs with only half the batting side gone are just a bad advertisement for test cricket. It wasn't as though the pitch was unplayable or bowling extraordinary. Time for fixed number of overs, so batsmen don't sleep at the wicket.

  • mzm149 on January 16, 2014, 14:08 GMT

    @Masrur G. Syed: Just get a life old man. The world is not blind. Just think why is number of Karachi players diminishing. Because they are not good enough. Those that play are below average and people like you are always willing to drag them in national team no matter how pathetic they are. You rule over our media and try to show your grudges against Punjabis time and again.

  • Bdcricketdebator on January 16, 2014, 14:01 GMT

    Karunaratne failled again to convert his start to a big score.if he fails in the next innings he should be benched forever.and kushal will get a chance.it will make our top order almost unbreakable.by the way i have a feeling in this match rangana hearath will be effective as ever.

  • Prabhash1985 on January 16, 2014, 13:47 GMT

    I see a huge transformation happened in Mathews. He has become a careful batsman. Chandi needs to be patient. Everybody has their own styles, but I think he has to play carefully as he did in this tour previously, to bring SL to a good total and save the match. All the best!

  • mzm149 on January 16, 2014, 13:33 GMT

    Misbah is showing grudges against Hafeez. He called off the first test match when Hafeez was on 80 and didn't let him complete his century. He removed Hafeez from bowling when he took wicket in second test match. Now Hafeez is dropped from third game.

  • jerryman on January 16, 2014, 13:31 GMT

    SL will be a little disappointed tdy. Sanga /Chandimal just gave away their wickets..Day 1 honors will go to Pakistan for now.. Matthews/prasanna a bit off a rescue act. Not yet out of the woods .. If these 2 batsmen can get another 100 runs would tilt the match SL way again . Batting on this wicket on day 5 will be difficult , as this will definitely be taking spin .... Hoping Prasanna /Matthews/perera and herath can get another 150-160 runs between them .... Just need to be cautious for the 1st hour tomorrow. Wicket may ease out in 2nd session ... Good luck lions .. need if possible to play another 2 sessions..

  • Nuwas on January 16, 2014, 13:28 GMT

    Sri Lanka 220/5 : will take it for sure considering the behavior this day 1's pitch. Gotta give credit for Pak for keeping it tight & for SL for battling it out. All in all its a good day of test cricket played, kudos to both the teams for showing some fighting spirit through out the day.

  • DreamCricketer on January 16, 2014, 13:16 GMT

    Dreamcricketer: Hope they drop Chandimal and if he performs they should bring him back. No point having a vice captain who scores 5 or 10 runs in a match or 0.. I hope they replace him with someone else before the next world cup..

  • Solid_Snake on January 16, 2014, 13:07 GMT

    Reverse Swing by Talha..After a long time i saw Pak Pacer reverse swinging like that.Great find for Pak..I hope He get some more wickets

  • VKohlitheGreat on January 16, 2014, 13:05 GMT

    Oh one player here and there in the SL selection camp and SL fans are panicking like anything, I say imagine how it is with Pakistan who need half a dozen of replacements to get their best team here.

  • Captain_Tuk_Tuk on January 16, 2014, 13:04 GMT

    I think SL is playing for a draw but if the pitch is turning I think we could see another batting collapse from Pakistan and SL could take this series 2-0 otherwise 1-0 is not bad either considering this is a away series for them :)

  • on January 16, 2014, 12:53 GMT

    with the position of the series, i think SL is a bit ahead and did well. Pitch is slow. Runs are not easy. but they are doing well to hang in there and score whatever is possible. Also they have batted full day out. and will do tomorrow as well. It was 1st day pitch so it will get more turn in next days which will help SL. and paksitan have to bat last. Pak will have to work hard to pull this off and draw series.

    well bowled by all the bowlers. Ajmal, Rehman, talha and junaid all bowled good. Pressure on paksitan to get a positive result in this game.

  • Nuwas on January 16, 2014, 12:50 GMT

    @Shiras Misbah: unfortunately this isn't the best 11, chandimal not in a good form & he is lacking patience as always(wonder in which format this guy belongs to) & Dilruwan could compensate for him with bat (of course Dilruwan could get 11 runs right ? & he is a spinner too, what would chandimal do after getting out for 11?) . Pradeep is bowling with 135-140 speed which will hurry the batsmen & he can reverse the ball & he uses the scramble seam very well. Would you rather have Chandimal or Pradeep as the 5th bowler in this side? Don't you think Pradeep could made more impact than Chandimal with current form?

  • on January 16, 2014, 12:24 GMT

    @nuwas i think sri lanka playing best 11 for this pitch. nuwan pradeep wont hav the control for this pitch. and v needed a spinner to support hearth. i guess they missed out on bringin in ajantha mendis when kulasekara flew back. his mystery on this pitch day 5 could hav done wonders, mind u pakistan hav a fairly new batting line up. only misbah n yonus khan must hav mendis in tests

  • on January 16, 2014, 12:17 GMT

    SL must target a 250 + score and they wil b safe . Pitch is spinning , reverse swing and with the control sri lankan bowlers had in last test.. i think they wil b very comfortable with a score above 250. and mind u , pakistan batsmen not gonna score any faster than sl player.. if sri lanka can get misbah and yunus early.. they wil b in driving seat... comon SL get to 300..

  • Blade-Runner on January 16, 2014, 12:16 GMT

    @Solid_Snake ; Don't be so judgmental. Plz Have a look at how the pitch is behaving. Its pretty suicidal. :) Only someone with a death wish would go for stroke making. The abrasive surface helps spinners a lot to get a decent spin 'n pacer to reverse swing. Its not easy at all to score runs here. You'll probably realize it when Pakistan come to bat. Btw, its gonna get worse from here. Remember its only the day 1. :)) If this match proceed to the 5th day, I'm pretty sure that a few batsmen will end up with some injuries coz its turning into a good old minefield.

  • Nuwas on January 16, 2014, 12:03 GMT

    well what'd you know , as I told earlier one bad choice: to keep Chandimal,not to drop him for Pradeep, is just proven. Chandimal is just a liability in this Test side, too bad the selectors can not see that. This pitch offers spin,bounce & revers swing...PAK will be walking on a minefield in their 4th innings for sure. I'm happy that finally Ajmal got a pitch to his liking, unfortunately for PAK, worries aren't over yet since SL also got two spinners & they will not be just tossing the ball around.

  • on January 16, 2014, 11:54 GMT

    Don't understand why we benched Pradeep after he was bowling so well. Absolute joke. Irrelevant of pitch conditions, he bowled very well and deserved to stay in the side especially as Sri Lanka need that pacey quick who bowls 140km and over regularly to improve their test match prospects against teams such as Aus and SA on their bouncy tracks.

  • Solid_Snake on January 16, 2014, 11:53 GMT

    It looks like SL team has already decided to go for a draw.Batting slowly as if it's a 10 day match.Pathetic

  • VKohlitheGreat on January 16, 2014, 11:40 GMT

    I am not really a big fan of Stuart Broad and Kumar Sangakkar and obviously both of them for the same reason. Gentleman's game anyone?

  • Nuwas on January 16, 2014, 11:27 GMT

    Jeez look at Ajmal after taking MJs wicket, as if a child got his first candy after so much crying, look how happy he is. not a bad wicket afterall ,MJ was looking dangerous. May be he got the pitch he wanted finally???

  • Nuwas on January 16, 2014, 10:58 GMT

    2nd session goes to PAK, lets see who takes the day. Sanga isn't in his full flow, just another 50. 300 runs will be more than a competitive score & whatever additional runs will be for SLs 2nd innings. Pak is way better in their bowling performance today than in previous two matches, yeah the pitch offers a bit more for the bowlers, still you gotta bowl well to get something out of it, so they're doing it well today. 200+ for 3 wickets would be great results for SL at the end of the day, but who exactly knows what happens in Cricket,right.

  • mzm149 on January 16, 2014, 10:40 GMT

    @rizwankamal: Test cricket has changed a lot. Look at Australia and South Africa. They are scoring at run rate of more than 4 per over. David Warner are Graeme Smith examples of openers who play aggressively. There is nothing wrong if Ahmed Shehzad plays fast.

  • on January 16, 2014, 10:18 GMT

    I wonder how the sanga's decision will change the context if game. at the moment this seems going lanka's way. after 1-0 up in the series they won't mind draw.. hope for Pak to be aggressive and make them play. gud luck #Pak

  • on January 16, 2014, 10:06 GMT

    Talha is good selection ,he is genuine fast bowler bowling consistently b/w 88mph to 90mph i wonder why he isn't gien chance instead Rahat Ali ? Hafeez never been test batsman azhar ali is better option at no. 3 ,while Asad shafiq should be given some more time he is only quality batsman in new guys along with umar akmal and sohaib maqsod i think umar akmal and sohaib maqsod should be given chance in test cricket it will improve pak batting crisis particularly in test cricket.

  • mzm149 on January 16, 2014, 9:43 GMT

    @Mahi Kashmiri: As far as Asad Shafiq is concerned, both his hundreds were of no use to Pakistan as Pakistan lost both of the matches. He was most needed in the second inning of last match. Even after a good start he got out. He cannot play new ball and gets out in similar fashion i.e. in slips. If Azhar Ali, Nasir Jamshed and M. Hafeez can get dropped due to bad form, why not Asad Shafiq. This shows clear bias of selectors towards certain players.

    Khurram Manzoor played a fluke of 146 in UAE and after that he has failed continuously chasing the ball. Shan Masood is much better than him and deserves to be in the team. This was not Khurram Manzoor's debut. He played four years back as well and was equally bad as he is now. Shan Masood got dropped after 2 games. Nasir Jamshed was given the most tough opponents on their home ground and even there he did not play complete series. Again this shows bias of our selectors.

  • Ray24 on January 16, 2014, 9:26 GMT

    Asad scored a century and a 50 in the last series against SA. He scored a 100 in SA. His average is 37-38, which is higher than most players who have played for Pakistan. It stands among the top 20 out of 250 odd players to ever play for Pakistan - so what is the issue? Please allow players to settle; dropping Azhar was a mistake and they have brought him back which is good. Ahmad Shahzad is a good player, but he should be played in ODI's and T-20's only. Dropping Hafeez is the best decision, along with the useless Rahat Ali. If this team were playing the first two tests, results would've been in Pakistan's favor.

  • Resultpredictor on January 16, 2014, 8:52 GMT

    SL will score around 400 and Sanga will score century today. Ajmal once again will be wicketless today and as usual Pak bowling will suffer a lot. Junaid is bowling wayward, Ajmal is not spinning the ball and other bowlers are waste. Pak batting is PATHETIC. SL will easily win this match.

  • Solid_Snake on January 16, 2014, 8:40 GMT

    @mzm149:Khurram Manzoor's place in the team is questionable but Asad Shafiq should be given more chances.He has proved himself already.Manzoor on the other hand has got so many flaws.I wonder how Manzoor made it into the team.Shan Masood when compared to him is technically better yet he was dropped just after 2 matches..

  • Solid_Snake on January 16, 2014, 8:39 GMT

    Team selection is great for this match..But this pitch is not something which would give us a result.I wonder what was in mind of PCB while preparing pitches.We should have gone for a win but we got a lifeless flat track instead.Now we will see piles of runs in this match..

    PS:Talha bowled beautifully..His control over line and length is just too good..Great action and Pace..Far better than Rahat Ali..Best of luck to hope Talha get more wickets and stays in the team.We need more youngsters like that..

  • rizwankamal on January 16, 2014, 8:32 GMT

    I dont know why Ahmed Shahzad is opening with Khurram. Test openers are different from ODI and T20. The technique, temperament and requirement are different. Ahmed is well settled as ODI and T20 opener, Khurram should opening with Shan. Azher Ali inclusion is good decision. Asad is technically sound, but lacks form and confidence. Saeed should be rested and Rehman should have replaced him. Anyway Good Luck for Pakistan

  • on January 16, 2014, 8:16 GMT

    MZM149 don't be harsh on Asad and Khuram , Asad scored 100 against SA, Khuram played well even though in 1st Test he was Run out because of ur favourite Shehzad, I would av dropped Shehzad for Shan. Good selection but again drop catch of Kurunaratne on 14 will hurt more Pakistan. Good Luck Misbah

  • Nuwas on January 16, 2014, 8:12 GMT

    Good session for SL . pitch is assisting spiners more than pacers as it seems, nevertheless pacers seem to have something in it as well, but not much. I have say dropping Pradeep & keeping Chandimal is the bad decision made while the good decision being the inclusion of Dilruwan. hopefully he could deliver & cover up for the bad decision made, Dilruwan can turn the ball way more than Herath for sure,so lets hope for the best. And SL need to increase the tempo a bit more after lunch since they've already tackled the hard phase well.

  • on January 16, 2014, 8:04 GMT

    i think SL did well to play an extra spinner. this pitch will start to turn more from 3rd day and SL bowling last. only question is which seamer they benched. all 3 were good in 2 nd so it was a tough call.

    from pak: shaan should have been given chance as well for khurram. but anyway3 changes were good and as expected. toss play an important role in Sharjha. and pressure will be on pak to get result in their favour. bowling is ok but not much happening out there. have to wait and see.

    its always hard to draw series on these sort of wickets. SL doesnt look like collapsing . top 7 in good form. have to work hard.

  • yorkslanka on January 16, 2014, 7:47 GMT

    cont..hence why Pradeep had to be the one to miss out...

  • on January 16, 2014, 7:39 GMT

    I acknowledge that Srilanka won the 2nd test and Pakistan had the upper hand through most of the 1st test eventually drawn. But we knew a different meaning of whitewash. What SLSLIDER is saying might well be his desire but practically this series cannot be whitewashed by SL no matter what they do in 3rd. Because first match was a draw. Someone should impart knowledge.

  • on January 16, 2014, 7:28 GMT

    Srilankan young stars are showing their quality cricket it sounds good before wold cup. Carry on.

  • sadSajith on January 16, 2014, 7:18 GMT

    Its a stupid decision to make Nuwan Pradeep benched... Even Suranga Lakmal got most wickets and man of the match award in dubai, Nuwan Pradeep bowled much better than them and is the one who made the defference...Just look at dubai scorecard Pradeep's 4 wickets are the pakistani top order(1,2,1,3).. Both Eranga and Lakmal bowled very well in both matches but their ability is to out swing.. Thats why they couldn't take more wickets in first match. Even they bowled very well they didn't have the support when they were tired. In second match Pradeep gave them the support which neither Herath nor Sachithra couldn't give by swinging both ways..Who would have better chance to get more wickets, Pradeep or Dilruwan? If they needed to give the young spinner a chance why didn't they make some senior player make way for it...In every view it is a stupid decision..

  • yorkslanka on January 16, 2014, 7:14 GMT

    after a good performance in the last match, it is a shamethat Pradeep has been dropped but the track obviously looks like its gonna turn in the days to come so i suppose (if this is the case) thats understandable. Risky ploy though to have only six batsmen...

  • on January 16, 2014, 6:54 GMT

    Pradeep should have played. These guys need test match experience .

  • on January 16, 2014, 6:53 GMT

    Sri Lanka are doing things a lot better now. Selections seem to be better than before. Give our talented youngsters all the opportunities. Marvan is a loyal, faithful servant to Sri Lanka like all of us. Please give him what he deserves. You will not find a better coach in foreigners. Marvan deserves the mental and he will produce results. Just look at the batting talents of our young players. I am sure Marvan has made his contributions.

  • on January 16, 2014, 6:30 GMT

    Nuwan Pradeep is benched ... very Strange decision

  • mzm149 on January 16, 2014, 6:28 GMT

    Retaining Asad Shafiq and Khurram Manzoor is mind boggling. I think they have to keep 2 or 3 quota players, no matter how bad they are.

  • on January 16, 2014, 6:04 GMT

    nuwan pradeep out you got to be kidding me

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  • on January 16, 2014, 6:04 GMT

    nuwan pradeep out you got to be kidding me

  • mzm149 on January 16, 2014, 6:28 GMT

    Retaining Asad Shafiq and Khurram Manzoor is mind boggling. I think they have to keep 2 or 3 quota players, no matter how bad they are.

  • on January 16, 2014, 6:30 GMT

    Nuwan Pradeep is benched ... very Strange decision

  • on January 16, 2014, 6:53 GMT

    Sri Lanka are doing things a lot better now. Selections seem to be better than before. Give our talented youngsters all the opportunities. Marvan is a loyal, faithful servant to Sri Lanka like all of us. Please give him what he deserves. You will not find a better coach in foreigners. Marvan deserves the mental and he will produce results. Just look at the batting talents of our young players. I am sure Marvan has made his contributions.

  • on January 16, 2014, 6:54 GMT

    Pradeep should have played. These guys need test match experience .

  • yorkslanka on January 16, 2014, 7:14 GMT

    after a good performance in the last match, it is a shamethat Pradeep has been dropped but the track obviously looks like its gonna turn in the days to come so i suppose (if this is the case) thats understandable. Risky ploy though to have only six batsmen...

  • sadSajith on January 16, 2014, 7:18 GMT

    Its a stupid decision to make Nuwan Pradeep benched... Even Suranga Lakmal got most wickets and man of the match award in dubai, Nuwan Pradeep bowled much better than them and is the one who made the defference...Just look at dubai scorecard Pradeep's 4 wickets are the pakistani top order(1,2,1,3).. Both Eranga and Lakmal bowled very well in both matches but their ability is to out swing.. Thats why they couldn't take more wickets in first match. Even they bowled very well they didn't have the support when they were tired. In second match Pradeep gave them the support which neither Herath nor Sachithra couldn't give by swinging both ways..Who would have better chance to get more wickets, Pradeep or Dilruwan? If they needed to give the young spinner a chance why didn't they make some senior player make way for it...In every view it is a stupid decision..

  • on January 16, 2014, 7:28 GMT

    Srilankan young stars are showing their quality cricket it sounds good before wold cup. Carry on.

  • on January 16, 2014, 7:39 GMT

    I acknowledge that Srilanka won the 2nd test and Pakistan had the upper hand through most of the 1st test eventually drawn. But we knew a different meaning of whitewash. What SLSLIDER is saying might well be his desire but practically this series cannot be whitewashed by SL no matter what they do in 3rd. Because first match was a draw. Someone should impart knowledge.

  • yorkslanka on January 16, 2014, 7:47 GMT

    cont..hence why Pradeep had to be the one to miss out...