Dubai - Sri Lanka have produced a professional performance to register their
biggest victory over Pakistan by nine wickets in the second Test in
Dubai, taking a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
Suranga Lakmal took all three wickets to fall on the fifth morning to
finish with a career-best 4-78 to wrap up Pakistan's second innings for
359 before Sri Lanka knocked off the meager 137-run target for one
In achieveing the victory, Sri Lanka also defied the cloudy weather in Dubai and rain forecast for later Sunday.
Dimuth Karunaratne (62 not out) hit the winning runs after putting on
124 for the first wicket with Kaushal Silva who fell after scoring 58.
Kumar Sangakkara remained unbeaten on nine.
Sri Lankan captain Angelo Mathews praised his bowlers.
"The bowlers did really well and the batsmen came to the party to set up this win," said Mathews.
"That's the beauty of Test cricket, we have to keep fighting despite the situation."
lowest defended target was 127 achieved against New Zealand at Hamilton
in 1993, when they dismissed their opponents for 93 but Sri Lanka
ensured the good work was not lost.
Sri Lanka had previously beaten Pakistan by eight wickets on two occasions in 45 Tests between the two nations.
In a surprise move Pakistan opened the bowling with off-spinner Mohammad Hafeez but both openers played with authority.
Silva hit five boundaries before trapped leg-before by Saeed Ajmal. Karunaratne hit eight boundaries off 125 balls.
Ajmal was once again ineffective, having now taken five wickets in two matches.
will be desperate to level the series in the third Test starting in
Sharjah from Thursday to avoid their first-ever series defeat in United
Arab Emirates, their adopted base for cricket since 2010 because of
security fears back home.
The first Test ended in a draw in Abu Dhabi.
Pakistan captain Misbah-ul Haq criticised the Dubai stadium pitch.
are not getting the pitch we want," said Misbah. "It's a worry as there
was no spin, even on the fifth day, and spinners are our strength."
Mahela Jayawardene, declared man-of-the-match for his 129, said he was happy to contribute in the win.
the hand dictated the way I batted and the match situation as well,"
said Jayawardene, who batted with stitches in his left hand.
bowlers did really well to limit the Pakistan batting. It's good to play
with this bunch of boys and we have one more Test to go so hope we do
well in Sharjah as well."
Earlier, Pakistan failed to prolong their resistance of the fourth day as they lost three wickets in the space of just 29 runs.
removed Sarfraz Ahmed in the fourth over of the day, bringing one in
sharply to beat the Pakistani's forward defensive push and hit the
off-stump. Sarfraz scored 74, batting for 211 minutes and hitting seven
boundaries in a fighting innings that took the game to the final day.
then had Rahat Ali caught behind for eight, for Prasanna Jayawardene's
ninth catch in the match. Prasanna equalled Sri Lanka's record of nine
catches by a wicketkeeper in a match set twice in successive Tests by
Amal Silva against India at home in 1985.
Lakmal bowled Ajmal (21) to end Pakistan's second innings. Lakmal's previous best was 3-55 against Australia at Galle in 2011.
Nuwan Pradeep, Shaminda Eranga and Rangana Herath took two wickets apiece.
Sri Lankan paceman bowled well on the first day to get Pakistan out for a low score of 165 and then gained a big 223-run lead.
did put up a fight, taking the game to the final day with Misbah
hitting 97 and Younis Khan scoring 77 on the fourth day but the
first-innings deficit led to their downfall.
Brief Scores: Pakistan 165 and 359; Sri Lanka 388 and 137-1