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Pakistan take slender lead before rain plays spoilsport

article_imageDAY 2 REPORT
Last updated on 25 Jul 2023 | 11:23 AM
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Pakistan take slender lead before rain plays spoilsport

After bowling Sri Lanka out for 166 on Day One, Pakistan batters have laid a solid foundation

Abdullah Shafique and skipper Babar Azam steered Pakistan to a 12-run lead, but rain halted their charge early on day two of the second Test against Sri Lanka on Tuesday. The tourists were 178 for 2 after resuming under gloomy skies on 145 for 2 with Shafique, on 87, and skipper Azam, on 28, batting in a stand of 57.

Only 43 minutes of play were possible before the downpour began and forced officials to call lunch, tea and finally stumps with the ground fully covered. More rain is predicted on day three, and Pakistan, who lead the two-match series 1-0, will depend on an aggressive approach to clinch the series.

Shafique and Azam took on the Sri Lankan bowlers with a string of boundaries after a couple of maiden overs to push for a big lead in response to Sri Lanka's total of 166. Shafique has smashed eight fours and two sixes in his 131-ball stay so far. Azam, who began the day on eight, took on the bowlers with a six and two fours in the 10 overs since play resumed.

Pakistan bowlers combined to dismiss Sri Lanka in the second session on the opening day after the hosts elected to bat first.

Shafique extended Pakistan's domination with a second-wicket stand of 108 with Shan Masood, who made 51, to put Sri Lanka on the back foot with their attacking play.

Brief scores:

Sri Lanka 166 (Dhananjaya de Silva 57, Dinesh Chandimal 34; Abrar Ahmed 4 for 69) trail Pakistan 178 for 2 (Abdullah Shafique 87*, Shan Masood 51; Asitha Fernando 2 for 51) by 12 runs

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