Sri Lanka v Pakistan, 1st Test, Galle, 2nd day

Sri Lanka steady after Pakistan post 451

The Report by Abhishek Purohit

August 7, 2014

Comments: 31 | Text size: A | A

Sri Lanka 99 for 1 (Silva 38*, Sangakkara 36*) trail Pakistan 451 (Younis 177, Shafiq 75, Perera 5-137) by 352 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details


Younis Khan walks off after being dismissed for 177, Sri Lanka v Pakistan, 1st Test, Galle, 2nd day, August 7, 2014
Younis Khan stretched his innings to 177 © AFP
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Herath hopes for 100-150 lead

  • A first-innings total of around 550 runs is Sri Lanka's best, if slim, chance of winning the match, Rangana Herath said. Sri Lanka trail Pakistan by 352 runs at the end of day two, with nine wickets in hand, and a good first innings total is the hosts' best insurance against losing two Galle Tests on the trot. Only one team has won the toss, batted, and lost in Galle in the last thirteen years.
  • "We have to bat all day tomorrow if we want to chase a win. In three sessions tomorrow, we should get around 300 runs. The important thing is to keep wickets in hand. Every run we score past their total is one with which we can put a lot of pressure on them with. That's how we can bring the spinners into the game. If we can get 100 or 150 runs more than them and put them under pressure. That would be the ideal thing."
  • Herath said that total might not be beyond Sri Lanka if they bat well, but did expect the pitch deteriorate substantially, with his side slated to bat last.
  • "It's only been two days, so as far as I see it, it's still good for the batsmen. There have been 550 runs scored so far. In the third, fourth and fifth day, there is a good chance the spinners will come into the game and the pitch will start to turn and bite."

Pakistan posted their second-highest total in the first innings of a Test in the past eight years as the lower middle order weighed in after Younis Khan's 177. Sri Lanka toiled for five sessions on a pitch that went placid after the first morning and conceded 450-plus in successive first innings in Galle - South Africa had made 455 last month. The hosts lost Upul Tharanga early, but Kumar Sangakkara and Kaushal Silva's partnership had steadily grown to 75 by stumps.

The overnight batsmen Younis and Asad Shafiq could add only 32 on the day before the latter was taken out by Rangana Herath. But Younis hung around to add 66 with Sarfraz Ahmed, who came in with a Test average of 18.58 and batted positively to make a fifty. So did Abdur Rehman, whose blows at No. 8 tipped Pakistan over 450.

There was next to nothing for the fast bowlers on the second morning on a drying pitch under overcast skies in sharp contrast to the first hour on day one. The surface was sedate, and Younis and Shafiq got going with nudges past gully. The only chance Sri Lanka created was an edge produced off Younis by Dhammika Prasad that fell short of first slip.

Angelo Mathews turned to Herath after six overs, but Shafiq stepped out and lofted him for six. Mathews brought himself on and tied Shafiq down with a couple of maidens. Shafiq, who had moved to 75 off 130, went scoreless for 15 balls before failing to pick Herath's arm ball and falling leg-before.

Sarfraz arrived and swept his first ball for two. He drove eagerly too, and the increased pace of scoring allowed Younis to continue in his own solid way. His leaving and defence were absolutely safe, like they had been through his innings.

He continued to be on the right side of reviews, Sri Lanka finding he had gloved a Herath ball onto pad on 147 as they appealed for leg-before. The 150 came up with a powerful drive off Shaminda Eranga through extra cover for four. Younis gave an opportunity to the same bowler when on 156, but Eranga could not hold onto another sharp drive in his followthrough. As the break neared, Younis jumped out and drove Herath inside-out through extra cover, leaving Sri Lanka staring at another afternoon on the field.

They were to strike soon after lunch, though. Younis went after Dilruwan Perera, off whom he took 58 off 61, again. He reverse-swept him from the line of leg stump for two, tried again and missed the second time and jumped out to the third ball but only chipped it to midwicket.

Sarfraz showed off his timing now, walking across to Prasad and clipping him four to deep midwicket. Even he was to fall to Perera on the leg side, when he hit one to short mid-on trying to go over the top.

Rehman had been targeted persistently with the short ball, but on a slow pitch, had survived without much trouble. He grew in confidence to take three successive fours off Eranga's short stuff. Two were cut over the cordon, while the third was whipped through square leg.

Even as Mathews sent several fielders to the deep, Rehman started stepping out to loft Perera for boundaries. One such attempt failed to clear wide long-off and Perera finished with five wickets, but Pakistan had scored freely off him, taking 137 in 31.5 overs from the offspinner and 190 in 52.5 for the day.

Sri Lanka's reply started in a frenzy of outside edges, none of which carried. Tharanga lasted 15 deliveries, and his innings was a mix of edges and copping it on the pad as he often fell over in his stance. It seemed only a matter of time before he nicked off or went leg-before and Junaid Khan chose the latter mode.

Mohammad Talha had Silva edging his first ball short of first slip. Silva's first three fours were outside edges, but to his credit he was trying to play softly, especially off the back foot. The story continued against the spinners, as an edge off Rehman went just past the keeper and bounced inches in front of Younis at slip. Silva's struggle to find the middle of the bat extended late into the day, but he also put away some rare wide ones from the spinners.

Sangakkara began with an edged boundary through the slips as well, but tightened up later. Pakistan did not refer an lbw appeal against him when he was on 13, and replays showed Saeed Ajmal's delivery would have hit leg stump. Sangakkara went without a boundary for 57 balls before he pulled and drove Junaid for two in an over just before stumps. Pakistan ended the day still comfortably ahead, but this is one wicket they will want early next morning.

Abhishek Purohit is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (August 8, 2014, 3:26 GMT)

Superb batting by the Pakistan middle order batsmen led by Younis Khan. Sri Lanka should take a lesson from this effort. Today is the day of reckoning for Sri Lanka as they should bat out the whole day if they are to save this game. At the moment Pakistan are on top despite some stout batting by Sanga & Kaushal but it is a long way from the comfort zone for Sri Lanka. We hope we will see some brilliant batting today by the Sri Lankans.

Posted by lazyone on (August 8, 2014, 2:44 GMT)

Sri Lankan pitches-->Win the toss and win the match So predictable. Killing cricket. Loosing interest

Posted by Htc-Android on (August 8, 2014, 0:34 GMT)

Yousufahmed1. I can see why you switched over to SL vs Pak game. Nobody wants to see India getting thrashed in England.

Posted by Desihungama on (August 7, 2014, 23:27 GMT)

Not so quick. The same Pak side can bundle out under 100 in next innings. Hopefully, I am wrong this time.

Posted by   on (August 7, 2014, 20:14 GMT)

@nimalgamage- When did the 3 bowlers you mentioned took 20 wickets and won a test match? Test cricket and A team or first cricket are miles apart. You can simply run through a good batting side on a wicket which is giving little assistance to the bowlers. We have identified two member spinning combination. Let me them work together for some time. They did bowl really well against SA. It was the batsmen who let us down in the last Galle test.

Posted by amuni12 on (August 7, 2014, 19:10 GMT)

I am not sure if SL has to bat the 4th inning whether they will survive the PK spin attack. So, my guess would be either PK win or a draw.

Posted by Herath-UK on (August 7, 2014, 19:03 GMT)

Poor Tharanga, isn't it better to look for another opener for the SSC, before the NZ series.

Posted by nimalgamage on (August 7, 2014, 17:25 GMT)

Please give chances to players like Lahiru Gamage, Dushmantha Chameera and Tharindu Kausal who can take 20 wickets and win a test match. Otherwise we will always have to satisfy with a draw even if our batsman perform well enough

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (August 7, 2014, 16:16 GMT)

Why didnt PAK use a review. Sanga would have been out.

Posted by   on (August 7, 2014, 16:00 GMT)

younis batted brilliantly,asad and sarfaraz showed some responsibilty and i think fawad should be included in place of khurram besause he has best avg in pak domestic cricket history and azhar should open.good luck team pak.........

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