Shafiq, Sarfraz give Pakistan control against Sri Lanka

(Reuters) – Asad Shafiq’s seventh hundred and a belligerent 96 from Sarfraz Ahmed helped give Pakistan a sizeable lead against Sri Lanka on the fourth day of the opening test at Galle yesterday.

Sri Lanka had hoped for quick wickets in the morning when Pakistan resumed on 118 for five but a sixth-wicket stand of 139 between Sarfraz and Asad Shafiq (131) put paid to their chances.

Another 101-run stand for the ninth wicket between Shafiq and Zulfiqar Babar (56) gave the visitors the upper hand in the match. Pakistan were finally all out for 417 with a first-innings lead of 117.

Pakistan then piled on the pressure and picked up two wickets in the remainder of the day’s play as Sri Lanka reached stumps on 63-2 in their second innings, still trailing by 54 runs.

Kaushal Silva (five), a centurion in the first innings, and the experienced Kumar Sangakkara (18) were the batsmen out.

Opener Dimuth Karunaratne (36) and nightwatchman Dilruwan Perera (nought) were at the crease for the hosts.

Asad Shafiq
Asad Shafiq
Sarfraz Ahmed
Sarfraz Ahmed

Earlier, wicketkeeper-batsman Sarfraz caused disarray in Sri Lanka’s disciplined attack with his innovative batting and hit 13 fours in his 86-ball knock.

His downfall came when he tried an unorthodox sweep against fast bowler Dhammika Prasad, with the ball catching the inside edge and going on to hit the stumps.

The dismissal gave Prasad his third wicket of the innings.

Shafiq was calm and composed during the partnership and hit five fours in his 253-ball stay.

He brought up his hundred with a boundary as the right-hander danced down the track to loft off-spinner Perera straight back over his head.

Shafiq continued to frustrate Sri Lanka’s bowlers with useful partnerships with the tail.

He added 38 with Wahab Riaz (14) for the seventh wicket and another 29 for the eighth with Yasir Shah (23) that took Pakistan past 300.

The ninth-wicket partnership with Babar, who also posted his highest test score and first 50, took Pakistan’s lead into three figures.

Shafiq became the final Pakistan wicket to fall when he was stumped by wicketkeeper Dinesh Chandimal.

Perera was the most successful Sri Lankan bowler with four wickets while Prasad picked up three. (Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; editing by Greg Stutchbury and Toby Davis)

Sri Lanka 1st innings 300 (K. Silva 125, K. Sangakkara 50)
Pakistan 1st innings (Overnight: 118-5)
M. Hafeez c Karunaratne b Prasad                     2
A. Shehzad lbw b Prasad                                      9
Az. Ali lbw b Herath                                              8
Y. Khan b D. Perera                                             47
Misbah-ul-Haq c Sangakkara b Pradeep         20
A. Shafiq st Chandimal b D. Perera                  131
S. Ahmed b Prasad                                               96
W. Riaz b D. Perera                                               14
Y. Shah c Chandimal b Pradeep                          23
Z. Babar c Vithanage b D. Perera                        56
J. Khan not out                                                         6
Extras (lb-1 nb-3 w-1)                                            5
Total (all out, 113.1 overs)                                   417
Fall of wickets: 1-2 M. Hafeez,2-11 A. Shehzad,3-35 Az. Ali,4-86 Y. Khan,5-96 Misbah-ul-Haq,6-235 S. Ahmed,7-273 W. Riaz,8-302 Y. Shah,9-403 Z. Babar,10-417 A. Shafiq Bowling D. Prasad 24 – 4 – 91 – 3 N. Pradeep 19 – 1 – 71 – 2(nb-2) R. Herath 30 – 4 – 99 – 1 D. Perera 31.1 – 3 – 122 – 4 A. Mathews 6 – 1 – 12 – 0(nb-1) K. Vithanage 3 – 0 – 21 – 0(w-1)

Sri Lanka 2nd innings
K. Silva c Az. Ali b Riaz                                      5
D. Karunaratne not out                                    36
K. Sangakkara c Az. Ali b Shah                       18
D. Perera not out                                                0
Extras (b-4)                                                        4
Total (for 2 wickets, 21 overs)                     63
Fall of wickets: 1-18 K. Silva,2-63 K. Sangakkara To bat: L. Thirimanne, A. Mathews, K. Vithanage, D. Chandimal, D. Prasad, R. Herath, N. Pradeep Bowling W. Riaz 6 – 3 – 11 – 1 J. Khan 4 – 0 – 19 – 0 Y. Shah 7 – 1 – 21 – 1 M. Hafeez 4 – 1 – 8 – 0 Referees Umpire: Richard Illingworth Umpire: Paul Reiffel TV umpire: Chris Gaffaney Match referee: Chris Broad

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