Galle, June 21 (IANS) Pakistan raced to a 10-wicket win over Sri Lanka to complete a remarkable turnaround in the first Test here on Sunday.
Openers Mohammad Hafeez and Ahmed Shehzad knocked off a victory target of 92 in just 11.2 overs after leg-spinner Yasir Shah’s seven-wicket haul set up Pakistan’s first win in Sri Lanka since 2006.
Pakistan were five down and 204 runs behind Sri Lanka’s first-innings total of 300 on the fourth day morning. Some superb counter-attacking by Asad Shafiq and Sarfraz Ahmed allowed them to secure a 117-run lead.
Yasir then confirmed that was a decisive advantage as he made full use of a final-day pitch offering enough help – despite the first day being washed out – to return with his Test-best figures of 7/76.
The 29-year-old leg-spinner now has 46 wickets in eight Tests since making his debut against Australia last October.
Sri Lanka were 63/2 when they began their fifth day action.
Yasir began the final day by fooling Dilruwan Perera into leaving a top-spinner that bowled the nightwatchman although the bulk of his work came after lunch when he claimed five wickets.
He first removed Angelo Mathews to an edge the Sri Lanka skipper unsuccessfully reviewed before half-centurion Dimuth Karunaratne’s patience ended, after a 173-ball stay, as he was stumped.
When Yasir then also had Dinesh Chandimal stumped to comlpete his seven-wicket haul, Sri Lanka were bowled out for 206 and Pakistan’s openers quickly set about ensuring a 1-0 lead in a three-Test series that resumes in Colombo on Thursday.
Brief scores: Sri Lanka 300 and 206 (Dimuth Karunaratne 79, Yasir Shah 7/76).
Pakistan 417 and 92/0 (Mohammed