Pakistan thump Sri Lanka in fifth ODI

Courtesy: International Cricket Council

Skipper Misbah-ul Haq and Umar Akmal hit half centuries to help Pakistan upstage Sri Lanka by three wickets in the fifth and final day-night international at Abu Dhabi Stadium on Wednesday.

Misbah hit an attractive 66 while Akmal finished on an unbeaten 61 to help Pakistan made light work of the Sri Lankan total of 218-9 as they reached home in 47.2 overs to take the five-match series 4-1.

The victory, followed a 1-0 win in the three-Test series, lifted Pakistan to fifth in the International Cricket Council’s one-day rankings. Misbah added 62 for the third wicket with Younis Khan (34) after Pakistan lost openers Mohammad Hafeez (14) and Asad Shafiq (26) in a shaky start.

Even when leg-spinner Jeevan Mendis removed Younis and Shoaib Malik – both trapped leg-before – off successive deliveries, Misbah and Akmal made sure Pakistan finished on the winning side. Misbah, who hit five fours during his 99-ball knock, found an able ally in Akmal, who helped his skipper add 84 for the fifth wicket before the Pakistan skipper miscued a reverse sweep off Mendis, who finished with 3-36.

Akmal, who hit eight boundaries during his fiery 60-ball knock, made sure Pakistan did not lose track by hitting the winning boudary. Earlier, Kumar Sangakkara scored 78 and Angelo Mathews made 61 during their innings-repairing fifth-wicket stand of 118 before Sri Lanka faltered, with only a late-order batting fightback helping them to a competitive total.

Sri Lanka were reduced to 46-4 after they decided to bat under overcast conditions that the Pakistani seam attack took full advantage of, grabbing four early wickets by the 11th over.

Paceman Sohail Tanvir, who took 4-34, had opener Upul Tharanga (three) and Dinesh Chandimal (seven) in his first spell, while Umar Gul accounted for Sri Lankan skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan (12) – all three caught behind the wicket.
First change Junaid Khan dismissed Chamara Silva (one) to leave the fight to Sangakkara and Mathews, who slowly built the innings against some quality pace and spin bowling.

Sangakkara hit eight boundaries during his 99-ball knock – his 67th one-day half-century – before he miscalculated a drive off spinner Mohammad Hafeez and was caught at extra cover by Misbah-ul Haq. Mathews, who hit two boundaries and two sixes off 101 balls, was bowled round his legs by off-spinner Saeed Ajmal.

Thisara Perera (25) added 34 runs for the eighth wicket with Seekkuge Prasanna, who made eight not out.

Pakistan, who won the first, third and fourth matches in the series, rested opener Imran Farhat, Aizaz Cheema and Sarfraz Ahmed to bring in Tanvir, Khan and Shafiq.

Sri Lanka were forced to bring in Silva for Mahela Jayawardene, who returned home due to a knee injury.

  • PremasiriS

    When a youngster is consistent and performing exceptionally well, he should be given his due place in the National side immediately. As it happened 30 years before in this country, and how it has been happening at present in all other Test playing countries. When seniors aren’t performing well, they should be dropped and their place has to be given to promising youngsters of the class of Chandimal, who should’ve been brought straight into the Side soon after his double century against NZ without allowing his confidence to get disturbed. Angelo Perera, Bhanuka Rajapaksha are 2 other promising batsmen who can easily replace any in this present 1stXI. Instead the selectors have always persisted with some good for nothing players who have done nothing at school nor in Domestic levels.
    In reality, we don’t send those who have failed the AL exam to Universities but only those who score highest marks, similarly the schoolboy cricketers who’ve maintained consistency from very young age have to be given their due place in the National teams by dropping the under performing seniors & other useless players without making thoughtless comments undermining true talent that the present day youngsters have blessed with. I would like to invite all those who’ve that mistaken belief to watch (e.g.) a recording of Arjuna ranatunga’s or Sangakkara’s batting in their early careers as International players, with that of present day young batsmen , that I’ve mentioned above. Both Mahela & Sangakkra had very poor batting averages in their 1st 25-30 ODI( refer Cricinfo Stats.) matches, it would definitely lies around 20 run mark per innings.
    When there is so much of Cricket to be watched these days, unlike 3 decades ago, there is no reason there to be a scarcity of talented Cricketers in the Country as some ignorant past cricketers try to show off as if they have batted like Don Bradman’s in their prime.