Mathews and Perera hurt Pakistan

Dilruwan Perera made a patient 95, while Angelo Mathews, the Sri Lankan captain, fell nine short of his second century in the series, as Sri Lanka reached 428 for 9 on the second day of the third and final Test in Sharjah on Friday (January 17). In reply, Ahmed Shehzad and Khurram Manzoor, the Pakistan openers, survived a tricky phase of play to help Pakistan reach 19 for no loss in six overs before stumps were drawn.

Perera, who is playing in his debut Test for Sri Lanka, came in at No. 8 and shared a 112-run stand with Mathews, as Pakistan’s bowlers toiled hard, before Mathews decided to declare Sri Lanka’s innings on 428 for 9.

Pakistan’s bowlers once again struggled on unhelpful conditions and were left frustrated by the brilliance of Mathews, who first shared a 73-run stand with Prasanna Jayawardena (35), the wicketkeeper, before joining Perera, as Pakistan failed in their attempt to get some quick wickets.

Perera, who made his One-Day International debut in 2007, added 72 valuable runs for the ninth wicket with Shaminda Eranga, who remained unbeaten on 25. Perera drove and pulled well and looked solid throughout his 305-minute long stay at the crease, before holing out to fine leg in an attempt to hook Mohammad Talha, the right-arm pacer.

Mathews, who has been Sri Lanka’s batting mainstay in the series, once again anchored the innings, and stayed for six hours at the crease, before miscuing a drive off Junaid Khan to fall nine short of a ton. Junaid finished with 3 for 81. He was supported well by Talha, who returned figures of 3 for 99, while Saeed Ajmal, after sweating it out for 55 overs, took 2 for 120.

(Courtesy: International Cricket Council)