Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 4th 2014 Contents A52
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, January 4, 2014
ABU DHABI---Angelo Mathews led Sri
Lanka s strong fightback with a career-
best unbeaten 116 and guided his team to
a healthy lead of 241 in the first cricket
Test against Pakistan yesterday.
Mathews defied Pakistan throughout the
fourth day and lifted Sri Lanka to 420-5 in
their second innings as bowlers toiled hard
for the sole success of Dinesh Chandimal
The Sri Lanka captain revived the innings
by adding 138 runs with Chandimal in nearly
3½ hours after resuming at a struggling
186-4 before adding further 96 runs with
Prasanna Jayawardene (48 not out).
Mathews hit 12 fours and a six in his 282-
ball knock against the pace trio of Junaid
Khan (3-81), Bilawal Bhatti (2-31) and wick-
etless Rahat Ali, and the offspin of Saeed
"Mathews batted very well at a crucial
stage and batted like a captain," Chandimal
said. "With a bit of spin on the wicket we
will keep our fingers crossed (for a win) and
a 300-plus target might be a winning tar-
Mathews completed his second Test cen-
tury off 239 balls with 11 fours and a six in
the last session when he clipped Bhatti to
square leg and ran for two runs.
Playing in his 34th test match, Mathews
surpassed his only previous test century of
105 not out against Australia in Colombo
in 2011 as Pakistan bowlers virtually had no
answer to break the strong defense of the
Sri Lanka skipper.
Pakistan s lone success came before tea
when Chandimal missed his century and
was caught at fine leg after hitting 12 fours
as Sri Lanka scored 70 runs in the second
Mathews and Chandimal frustrated
bowlers in their century-stand after Sri
Lanka resumed at a struggling 186-4 --- a
lead of only seven runs.
Pakistan failed to cash in on its lone
chance when Ahmed Shehzad could not
judge a sharp edge of Chandimal in Bhatti s
first over after lunch.
But the chance didn t prove that costly
as Chandimal, who showed lot of patience
by facing 166 balls, finally holed out to Ali
to give Khan his third success of the innings.
"I m quite disappointed, because that 89
came in difficult circumstances for the team,"
Chandimal said. "It was a really tough sit-
uation, but I came through that and in the
last moment, getting out like that is dis-
Earlier, Chandimal resumed on 24 and
moved to 67 by lunch while Mathews also
completed his half century off 113 balls to
revive Sri Lanka by adding 99 runs.
Pakistan had Sri Lanka in trouble on the
third day when fast bowler Bhatti claimed
key wickets of experienced Kumar San-
gakkara (55) and Mahela Jayawardene in
quick succession, and Khan had opening
batsman Kaushal Silva (81) caught behind.
But the Pakistan pacers struggled to get
the much needed breakthrough as Chandi-
mal and Mathews even played out the sec-
ond new ball solidly in an extended 2½-
hour first session due to Friday prayers.
Both batsmen showed a lot of grit against
pacers while Ajmal looked ineffective and
couldn t find much turn to bother bats-
Pakistan coach Mohammad Akram
expected his team could still go for the target
if the bowlers could wrap up the innings
quickly on Saturday.
Just before play started, Pakistan wick-
etkeeper Adnan Akmal was ruled out of the
remainder of the test series after fracturing
his index finger. Akmal was hit on his left
index finger when he caught Silva in the
last over of the third day on Thursday.
The Pakistan Cricket Board said in a state-
ment Friday that Sarfraz Ahmed will be
flown in for the remaining two matches in
the series. Ahmed played in last year s three-
test series in South Africa before Akmal
regained his place in the national team.
Younis Khan replaced Akmal behind the
wickets when play resumed on the fourth
Sri Lanka 1st Innings: 204
Pakistan 1st Innings: 383
Sri Lanka 2nd Innings
DimuthKarunaratnebJKhan . . . . . . . . . .24
KaushalSilvacAkmalbJKhan . . . . . . . . .81
Kumar Sangakkara c Y Khan b Bhatti . . .55
Mahela Jayawardene c Shafiq b Bhatti . . .0
DineshChandimalcAlibJKhan . . . . . . . .89
PrasannaJayawardenenotout. . . . . . . . .48
Fall of wicket: 1-47, 2-146, 3-150, 4-186, 5-
Still to bat: Sachithra Senanayake,
Rangana Herath, Suranga Lakmal,
Bowling: Junaid Khan 31-2-81-3, Rahat Ali
33-8-82-0, Bilawal Bhatti 33-8-131-2,
Saeed Ajmal 42-10-96-0, Mohammad
Umpires: Richard Kettleborough, England,
and Bruce Oxenford, Australia
TV umpire: Sundaram Ravi, India.
Match referee: Javagal Srinath, India
Pakistan wicketkeeper Adnan Akmal is out
of the ongoing first Test against Sri Lanka after
fracturing his left index finger. He will take no
further part in the series. Sarfraz Ahmed has
been named as replacement for the second and
third Tests in Dubai and Sharjah, and will pro-
ceed to the UAE to join the squad.
Akmal damaged the finger while taking the
catch of Kaushal Silva off what turned out to be
the last delivery on day three. He was seen rubbing
his finger after the end of the day s play. Younis
Khan took over keeping duties at the start of the
fourth day of the Test.
Sarfraz s last game for Pakistan was an ODI
against Zimbabwe in Harare in August 2013. The
last of his four Tests came against South Africa
in Centurion in February 2013.
Umar Gul, the fast bowler, has returned home
to Pakistan to work with the National Cricket
Academy, and also get some domestic matches
under his belt in a bid to regain match fitness.
He had earlier been recalled to the Pakistan squad
for the ODI leg of Sri Lanka s tour after a nine-
month layoff due to a knee injury he had sustained
in March during the second ODI against South
Africa at Centurion.
He played in all three of the ODIs against Sri
Lanka, taking seven wickets in all.
ABU DHAB---Dinesh Chandimal is not
expecting Sri Lanka to lose the first
Test against Pakistan after his century
stand with captain Angelo Mathews
yesterday provided Sri Lanka a lead of
Chandimal missed out on a century
when he was dismissed for 89 but his
138-run fourth wicket stand with Math-
ews in nearly 3½ hours lifted Sri Lanka
to 420-5 by stumps.
Mathews batted throughout the day
and was unbeaten on a career-best 116
and Chandimal says Sri Lanka has a game
plan for the last day.
Mystery surrounded the fitness of Boyd
Rankin following the first day s play in Sydney
after the fast bowler was twice forced from the
pitch on his first day as a Test cricketer.
Rankin, who retired from Irish cricket at the
end of the 2012 to concentrate on playing Test
cricket for England, appeared to have suffered a
hamstring strain after bowling the first delivery
of his ninth over but, after leaving the field for
treatment, was able to resume about 90 minutes
later. He then managed just one more delivery
before a recurrence of the problem forced him
off again in obvious pain and clutching his left
But after a scan showed no injury, the England
camp claimed Rankin had simply been suffering
from cramp and should be fit to resume bowling
duties in the second innings.
Such a scenario would raise questions about
Rankin s physical condition going into the game.
While the weather in Sydney was warm---it
reached 27 degrees at one stage in the after-
noon---it was some way below the extremes expe-
rienced in Perth or in Alice Springs.
It is possible that nerves could have played a
part. The 29-year-old Rankin has endured a long
journey to the Test environment and knows,
coming into a struggling team at the end of a
series, that he may not enjoy many opportunities
to prove his worth at this level. A somewhat shy,
quietly-spoken man from a rural background, it
is also possible that tension played a part, or that
the pain has some psychosomatic origin. He has
been known to experience similar problems with
his left foot after suffering from a stress fracture
in it several years ago.
The schedule may also be relevant. While
Rankin has bowled almost every day in the nets,
he has not played a match since the end of
November, when he delivered 14.5 overs during
the game in Alice Springs. It may be that he
came into this game simply lacking match fit-
While Rankin was monitored by the England
medical team ahead of play after reporting general
stiffness, there was no specific concern about
his hamstring and he was subsequently cleared
Captain Mathews muscles
Sri Lanka into good position
Angelo Mathews plays a cut through the off side
Chandimal not expecting to lose
Adnan Akmal ruled out
with fractured finger
Rankin 'cramp' raises
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