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

'Bowlers controlled runs well' - Rehman

Pakistan's left-arm spinner, Abdur Rehman said his side would be looking to dismiss Sri Lanka in the first session on the second day after the visitors ended the first day of the Sharjah Test at 220 for 5.

Pakistan lost the toss on a pitch that did not offer much help for bowlers early on, but the spinners were able to strike as the day wore on. While Saeed Ajmal picked up two wickets in 29 overs, Rehman bowled 24 tight overs at an economy rate of 1.87. He also bowled 120 dot balls, playing a vital role in containing Sri Lanka.

According to Rehman, the pitch was also difficult for the batsmen, who needed more time to settle in.

"The pitch is pretty flat and we have to very work hard," Rehman said. "It didn't turn much in the first two sessions but after that, it started to turn and I am hoping to get more turn in the third and fourth innings. Our bowlers were able to control the runs well. Our plan is to get them as soon as possible in first two hours and give them a tough time.

"It's not easy to play strokes, the batsmen need more time to settle in. We are aiming to take a hefty lead to support the bowlers in the third innings."

Rehman also rued the chances Pakistan missed, specially Mohammad Talha's dropped catch off Angelo Mathews, when the batsman was on 0. Mathews and Prasanna Jayawardene put on an unbeaten 54 runs for the sixth wicket, batting until the close of play.

"It was a difficult catch but Talha tried his best," said Rehman. "It has made some difference but we will try to get them out as soon as possible on day two."

Rehman has been a part of many Pakistan squads since his debut in 2007, but has played only 19 Tests so far. When asked about his sporadic Test appearances, the bowler said: "I am used to it. Actually this question - whether I will play or not - never came into my mind and the only aim is to perform on the day I play. I am always positive and do not let myself get disappointed or frustrated. The only thing I know is to show my ability whenever I get a chance."

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Pankaj on January 17, 2014, 8:26 GMT

    It's not about the bowlers - for Pakistan the batsmen have to deliver. The containment by the bowlers is just a consolation. The time factor in this Test does not matter and Sri Lanka have just hunkered down for the first target of 300 and then onwards slabs of 50 runs. Can Pakistan get a hundred-run lead? Else with all their fine bowling they are liable to lose.

  • Dummy4 on January 17, 2014, 5:57 GMT

    Saeed ajmal doing good job but with the help of abdul rehman

  • chami on January 17, 2014, 4:10 GMT

    SL selectors should consider using young player like Chandi, he does not have patios just played a rubbish shout and got out ... i think this is good wicket for bowlers SL did well to stay in for 90 overs, keep playing test cricket guys ...

  • MOHAMMED on January 17, 2014, 1:47 GMT

    Pak cannot win this match. Pakistan cannot even draw this match then how can they win this match. Its all rubbish. If Pak batsman can bat long and sensible then there is a chance that match will be drawn otherwise SL will easily win this match. Fate tells up that SL will easily win this match and it will happen for sure. Whenever Sarfaraz played for Pak, it lost all the matches.

  • Dummy on January 16, 2014, 20:00 GMT

    The only way to win this match for Pakistan is to get SL out before they reach 300. Then bat once and long, getting lead of 120 and then put pressure back on SL. It's easier to say than done but this is the only way to win keeping in view the nature of the pitch which is only going to wear more with every hour.

  • Android on January 16, 2014, 19:37 GMT

    this will spin more by every passing day. SL did very well to bat out whole day and some time tomorrow. pak will be playing 4 th and already 1-0 so pressure on them to get a positive result which is hard.

    2nd day will be important.

    i think pak was a bit unlucky today with decisions etc but they bolwed well. if they can take remaining wickets in 1 session then they have a good chance. not easy to score runs and need some time.

  • Dummy4 on January 16, 2014, 18:02 GMT

    This pitch is showing signs that spinners will be in command in the 3rd and 4th innings. Scoring will be difficult due to the ball not coming on to bat. Pakistan will have to play very smartly to square the series.

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