LAHORE-Noman Ali’s best figures in an innings led Pakistan to an emphatic innings and a 222-run win over Sri Lanka on day four of the second Test match at the Sinhalese Sports Club Ground in Colombo on Thursday.
According to information made available here, the win also kept Pakistan’s 100 per cent record in the Test series, clean sweeping the hosts in the two-match Test series and starting the ICC World Test Championship 2023-25 on a winning note. Pakistan had defeated Sri Lanka by four wickets in Galle.
Resuming their first innings at the overnight score of 563 for five in 132 overs, Pakistan declared their innings after two overs adding 13 runs and without losing any wicket. Rizwan, who returned unbeaten on 37 the previous day, scored 13 runs and brought up his half-century off 67 balls, hitting four fours and one six. Salman Ali Agha, who played six balls in the morning, didn’t add any run to his overnight score of 132, which included 15 fours and one six.
In turn, Sri Lanka, resuming their second innings with a deficit of 410 runs, were found unplayable by the spin bowling from left-armer Noman Ali. Only Angelo Mathews (63*), Dimuth Karunaratne (41) and Nishan Madushka (33) showed some resistance while all other Lankan batters fell cheaply.
Noman Ali bagged first seven wickets to fall and ended up with match figures of 26-9-80-7. Naseem Shah, who bowled with pace and reversed swing the ball, bagged the final three wickets. He also took three wickets in the first innings and his match figures was 31.4-8-85-6. For his maiden double century, sensational batter Abdullah Shafiquewas named player of the match.
Jayasuriya managed to trap Babar leg-before in the first hour of the third day. Speaking about it during the team meeting after winning the series, Captain Babar Azam said: “If he bowls 50 overs in the entire match, then I am bound to make a mistake at some point,” acknowledging the challenge Jayasuriya presents as a bowler.
“Jayasuriya is one of Sri Lanka’s best bowlers. I have indeed been dismissed by him quite a lot of times and I have worked on it as well. I also scored runs in the last innings. I am the only, one who got out to him. But our batters played him really well and dominated him. We have won as a team. If I am struggling, then others have stepped up, which is a positive sign for me as a captain,” Babar added.