That's it from us then! Once again Tests in UAE seemed to be toothless for the first three days but then sparked up as we reached the climax. Well, we had two terrific Tests and Sri Lanka came out on top on both the occasions. The fact that both the matches went to day 5 speaks volumes regarding how competitive the series was. The battle between the Asian Giants doesn't stop here. They will now face each other in limited overs cricket. The first ODI of the 5-match series is on 13th October at 1500 local (1100 GMT) in Dubai. Do join us for that. Till then, goodbye and take care! Cheers!
Dinesh Chandimal is absolutely elated with the win. Credits the team and management for the same. Feels they had a tough time against the Indians but informs they had a game plan here which they executed really well. Praises the efforts put in by his team to pull off a historic win. Informs that with the dew around, it was difficult to bowl later in the night on day 4 but was confident of doing the job this morning as they knew the ball would grip more. Ends by saying he is happy to be on the winning side.
Sarfraz Ahmed starts by saying it was a tough series for them but feels they came close in both the games. Adds they weren't up to the mark and didn't deserve to win. Points out the batting which has let them down every time. Opines the batsmen didn't show any fight and had they stayed there for a bit, things would have been different. Reckons Sri Lanka had an edge in the spin department. On his captaincy, he admits it is a tough job but it's been a good learning curve for him. Promises for improvement in the upcoming games.
Man of the Match and Series, Dimuth Karunaratne is really delighted to have contributed for the team. Adds after the loss against India they practiced really hard and it paid off here. Further says his plan was to bat big and knew the runs would come once he gets set. He tried to be positive and it worked for him and his side.
For Sri Lanka, it was a team effort. Right from their lower middle order contributing useful runs in the first innings total, to their pacers leaving an impact, they managed to dominate the crunch moments. They did feel the heat last night but didn't lose confidence. Once again showed the heart to fight today by sticking to their guns and achieving a historic series win.
With Asad Shafiq and Sarfraz Ahmed taking away all the limelight for their partnership, there is one more Pakistani player who deserves a mention. Yasir Shah! He bowled a marathon spell in the first innings, picking up 6 wickets, his fifth consecutive 5-wicket haul in Tests (first spinner to do so) and was the only bowler who looked penetrative enough to pose any threat. Although, Wahab Riaz's second innings efforts cannot be overlooked.
The chase fell completely on its face as Pakistan found themselves reeling on 52/5 but then we all witnessed a stupendous partnership between Sarfraz Ahmed and Asad Shafiq. They reignited hope in the hosts' camp and stretched this Test match to the final day. With 119 runs needed and five wickets left, this game was nicely set up for today but once again Pakistan showed us their unpredictable side. Sarfraz Ahmed departed soon and the tail didn't offer much resistance after that. Asad Shafiq who completed a valiant century fell to Lakmal and that proved to be the final nail. Dilruwan Perera finished with 8 wickets in the match and was the best bowler on show for the visiting team.
A Test match to remember! Sri Lanka won the all-important toss and powered by Dimuth Karunaratne's daddy hundred, they posted a big first innings total. In reply, Pakistan's batting didn't click and they ended up conceding a massive 220-run lead to the Islanders. The home team, though, managed to claw their way back in the game after bundling out Sri Lanka under 100 but they still were behind the 8-ball with a target of 317 set in front.
What a win for Sri Lanka! They were down and out after the India series but have shown tremendous character to bounce back and register a series win in that part of the world where no one has! The Lankan team is in a huddle near the pitch, all the players are excited and it's showing in their celebration. High fives in the Sri Lankan dressing room, they are all smiles and hugging each other. This victory means a lot for Chandimal and his boys.
Rangana Herath to Wahab Riaz
OUT! Chandimal takes it! Sri Lanka create history! They have sealed the series 2-0! Coming to the ball, Herath floats it up around off, Riaz dances down the track to slog it over the leg side but the ball turns away and he ends up slicing it over covers. Chandimal comes running in a few yards and settles under the skier. He roars in joy. SRI LANKA WIN BY 68 RUNS!
Bowls a slider around middle, punched off the back foot towards the left of the bowler.
Suranga Lakmal to
Fuller on the pads, Abbas gets across and flicks it down to fine leg and refuses the single.
Angles it in on middle, Abbas stands back and defends it towards mid on.
Suranga Lakmal to Wahab Riaz
Fuller and fired on the stumps, clipped to deep square leg for one.
Riaz runs out of patience as he looks to pull this length ball. Mistimes it towards mid-wicket.
Skids off the surface on middle and leg, wristed towards the leg side.
Shortish ball on middle and leg, worked towards mid-wicket for a single.
Slider around middle, Riaz stays leg side to defend but misses and is hit on the pads.
Flattish outside off, slapped towards cover.
WR has played that off the front foot and into the ground.