Lasith Embuldeniya and Lahiru Kumara shared eight wickets to put Sri Lanka in the driver’s seat before Pakistan took three crucial wickets on the first day’s play in the second Test match in Karachi on Thursday.
Embuldeniya and Kumara took four wickets apiece to bundle out Pakistan to 171 after the hosts opted to bat first. In reply, at stumps, Sri Lanka were 64 for 3 after losing their top order.
Earlier in the first session, left-arm seamer Vishwa Fernando struck early, with the first ball of the seventh over when he hit the top of the off-stump as left-handed Shan Masood was clean bowled with a vicious delivery.
Two balls later, Pakistan skipper Azhar Ali was also castled by Fernando with a cracking delivery which went through Ali’s defenses. The home team captain’s torrid run continued as he has not passed the half-century mark in 13 innings. In nine, he has not even got to double figures.
Abid Ali and Babar Azam added a fruitful 55-run stand to stage a comeback. However, with only a few minutes left for lunch, Pakistan lost Ali who was struck plumb in front by Kumara.
In the post-lunch session, Embuldeniya dismissed both Babar Azam and Haris Sohail to further derail the hosts. A beautiful delivery with flight, dip, turn and bounce by the tall left-arm spinner, Embuldeniya deceived Azam as he was stumped for 60. Sohail was caught on crease as the ball hit the front-pad and the left-hander was adjudged LBW just before Tea.
In the first over after the Tea break, Kumara backed his pace and delivered the killer blow by removing Mohammed Rizwan and Yasir Shah in two consecutive deliveries. Rizwan was clean bowled by a full delivery and Shah played across the line to a full, straight ball.
The tail couldn’t wag enough for the hosts after set batsman Asad Shafiq fell to a well-directed short delivery by Kumara. In the meantime, Embuldeniya snapped up Mohammed Abbas and Shaheen Shah Afridi.
Sri Lanka with a little more than an hour left lost Oshada Fernando, who made an impressive start as an opener in Pindi. He failed to see off the new ball as poked unnecessarily only to be caught behind off left-arm seamer Shaheen Shah Afridi.
Mohammad Abbas rediscovered his mojo removing Dimuth Karunaratne with a regulation delivery as he chopped one onto the stumps. With only 10 minutes left to stumps, Abbas set up Kusal Mendis brilliantly with a good length delivery which took the outside edge and was snapped up cleanly by the first slip fielder.
Angelo Mathews remained unbeaten on 8 along with night watchman, Lasith Embuldeniya.