Pakistan crush Sri Lanka in the first Test by 10 wickets
GALLE: Pakistani Player Leg-spinner Yasir Shah claimed a career-best seven for 76 as Pakistan stunned Sri Lanka by 10 wickets in the first Test on Sunday to take the lead in the three-match series.
Yasir spun a web around the Sri Lankan batsmen for bowling for a paltry 206 in their second innings just before tea on the fifth and final day.
Pakistan has set a goal to win 90, ran home in 11.2 overs with Mohammad Hafeez unbeaten on 46 and Shehzad Ahmed of 43 at the International Stadium in Galle.
It was Pakistan’s first Test victory in Sri Lanka since the triumph of the eight wicket in Kandy in 2006. The second test starts at the P. Sara Oval in Colombo on Thursday.
Pakistan’s 96-5 remarkable recovery in the first innings came after the first day’s room had been washed and only 64 overs were bowled on the second day.
Opener Dimuth Karunaratne top scorer with 79, 44 and Lahiru Thirimanne made and Dinesh Chandimal was the last man of 38, but the rest of the batsmen folded against Pakistan’s incisive bowling.
The 29-year-old Yasir torn stick as Sri Lanka lost their last five wickets for 39 runs after being 167 for five to one point.
Sri Lanka took their overnight score of 63-2 to 144-4 lunch before six wickets fell on a dramatic afternoon in front of some 1,000 fans at home.
The hosts lost night watchman Dilruwan Perera off the first ball of the day, clean bowled by Yasir, but the southpaw Karunaratne and Thirimanne pair put on 69 runs for the fourth wicket.
With the hosts only 15 runs ahead, Wahab Riaz left arm seamer had Thirimanne low at first slip by Younis Khan to keep the interest alive during the lunch break.
Sri Lanka suffered a massive blow on the second ball after the break when skipper Angelo Mathews was controversially handed caught at short leg by television umpire Chris Gaffaney.
The New Zealander has confirmed field official Richard Illingworth, which had ruled that the drummer was caught at short leg Yasir although replays proved inconclusive if the ball came off the bat.
Mathews, who had called for a review as soon as the referee raised his finger, was visibly angry as he was returning to the lodge.
Neither hot-spot or Snickometer technology is part of the review of the decision system for the series.
Karunaratne’s patience, after more than four hours vigil at the crease failed when he attempted a big hit off Yasir, missed the line and was smartly stumped by Sarfraz Ahmed agile to 167-6.
It soon became 175-7 as Kithuruwan Vithanage swept a flighted ball Zulfiqar Babar to the leg-box, giving Yasir his second term five wickets or more in a career eight tries.
Dhammika Prasad was stumped off Rangana Herath Babar and entrenched in the deep off Yasir before Chandimal was last out, stumped off Yasir.
The tests will be followed by five one-day internationals and two Twenty20 matches.