Monday, March 27, 2006

Pakistan have upper hand in Test

First Test, Colombo: Sri Lanka 185 v Pakistan 124-4

Pakistan hold the upper hand in the first Test against Sri Lanka in Colombo after dismissing the hosts for 185.

At the close on day two Pakistan were 124-4 in reply, with Imran Farhat hitting 69.

Sri Lanka were put in to bat in overcast conditions and with the ball darting all over, slumped to 30-5.

Tillakaratne Dilshan (69) and Farveez Maharoof (46) put on 111 for the sixth wicket as fast bowler Mohammad Asif took 4-41.

Sri Lanka got off to a torrid start when play finally got under way after the first day was washed out with opener Upul Tharanga out for a duck, lbw to Asif, with the fourth ball of the day.

Sanath Jayasuriya, playing his first Test match in six months, Kumar Sangakkara and skipper Mahela Jayawardene also failed to reach double figures.

But Dilshan and Maharoof fought back before and after lunch until Maharoof became Asif's fourth victim after he was dismissed thanks to a great reflex catch by Younis Khan at second slip.

Dilshan was hoodwinked by spinner Danish Kaneria, who took 3-44.

Pakistan were in trouble themselves at 28-3 before Farhat hit 69 off 90 balls before losing his wicket in fading light.

Captain Inzamam-ul-Haq was unbeaten on 30 at the close.

The home side were forced to go into the match without regular captain Marvan Atapattu and key paceman Chaminda Vaas, both sidelined by injury.

Pakistan, without fast bowling spearhead Shoaib Akhtar, suffered a late setback when batsman Mohammad Yousuf was ruled out by a hamstring problem.

And Pakistan pace bowler Rana Naved-ul-Hasan was also unavailable because he has returned home to see his wife, who is ill.

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