Pakistan’s Abrar Ahmed and Naseem Shah shone as they ran through Sri Lanka’s wickets, bowling out the home side at 166 in the first innings of the second Test in Colombo on Monday.
The two players rattled Sri Lankan batters, giving them little space to breathe.
Dhanajaya de Silva — who tired hard to replicate his first Test’s heroics here — could only score 57, falling to Abrar, with Saud Shakeel taking a well-judged catch.
Abdullah Shafique once again took a blinder at short leg off Abrar to remove unlucky Sadeera Samarawickrama who got out in the same way for the third time in a row this series.
Ramesh Mendis resisted a bit with his 27 runs but Sri Lanka fell apart just before Tea.
Abrar bagged four wickets while Naseem managed three.
Shan Masood, with a brilliant throw in the third over, provided an early breakthrough for Pakistan in the opening hour of the first day. Nishan Madushka remained unlucky as the throw went straight to thrash the stumps on the striker’s end.
Shaheen Shah Afridi removed Kusal Mendis in the seventh over to further dent the hosts who decided to bat first after winning the toss following a delay due to early morning rain.
It was not too late when Naseem promised to be real destruction for Sri Lanka as he took back-to-back wickets in quick succession. The right-arm pacer bagged Angelo Mathews and Dimuth Karunaratne within his two overs closer to the 15th.
Mathews (9) and Karunaratne (17) were two experienced batters who were the need for Sri Lanka in the tough time.
Dhanajaya de Silva and Dinesh Chandimal walked off at Lunch with Sri Lanka suffering at 79-4.
More to follow…