Sri Lanka in trouble after electing to bat first against Pakistan in second Test

COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s top order continued to struggle against Pakistan’s quicks as Naseem Shah and Shaheen Afridi made early inroads to reduce the hosts to 79 for four at lunch on the first day of the second Test at Sinhalese Sports Club in Colombo.

After Sri Lanka opted to bat first they were soon in all sorts of trouble after some senseless batting.

Rain had delayed the start of play by one hour but when the game began, opening batsman Nishan Madushka (4) was run out in the third over.

Captain Dimuth Karunaratne pushed an Afridi delivery to cover point and hurried for a single but Shan Masood moved in from extra cover and threw down the stumps with Madushka short of his crease at the striker’s end.

Kusal Mendis (6) then drove Afridi straight to cover point where substitute fielder Mohammad Rizwan took an easy catch.

Naseem changed ends and dismissed Angelo Mathews (9) and Karunaratne (17) in successive overs. Mathews edged one to the wicketkeeper while Karunaratne chopped one onto his stumps attempting a drive.

At 36 for four, Sri Lanka were in real trouble but an unbeaten 43-run stand for the fifth wicket between Dhananjaya de Silva and Dinesh Chandimal steadied the innings, though much work was left to be done.

De Silva, Sri Lanka’s hero in the first Test with a hundred and a half-century, played some elegant shots and took on Pakistan’s spinners. He was unbeaten on 33 off 40 deliveries with seven fours. Chandimal was nine not out.

Sri Lanka dropped quicks Kasun Rajitha and Vishwa Fernando, who had featured in the opening Test and brought in Asitha Fernando and debutant Dilshan Madushanka, a highly-rated left-arm quick.


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