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January 19 2018, 01:40 | Van Peters
Dilruwan Perera of plays a shot during the second day of the second Test cricket match between Sri Lanka and Pakistan. —AFP
Thirteen months after lifting the prestigious ICC Test Championship mace for topping the ICC Test Team Rankings, Pakistan have plummeted to seventh in the latest Test team rankings, which were updated following the conclusion of its home series against Sri Lanka.
Chasing 317 to win, Asad Shafiq scored a valiant 112 before Pakistan was bowled out for 248 inside the first session on day five.
With the injury to Mohammad Amir, the likes of Mohammad Abbas and Wahab Riaz had to shoulder the extra responsibility to help their teams cause. Amir opted to review the decision after being given out, but it went in vain as the umpire's decision was upheld.
Pakistan had their backs to the walls after being dismissed for a modest 262 in reply to Sri Lanka's 482 and conceding a monumental lead of 220 after the 1st innings.
Dilruwan was easily the pick of the bowlers with five wickets, while Herath snapped up two wickets, and Lakmal, Pradeep and debutant Lahiru Gamage claimed one wicket each. We played a Test series after quite a while and we prepared well for it.
The impact on Pakistan's Test side will not be so important beyond this match - Pakistan do not play another Test until May next year when they tour England for a two-Test series. This series, we made fifties, but we didn't convert them and we missed big partnerships.
That leaves Pakistan, already struggling with the ball in this Test, a bowler short going ahead - with only one specialist spinner and with Wahab Riaz enduring his own problems at one stage with his run-up. "Last night it was a little hard to bowl, especially with the dew". We lacked in our batting, we didn't play any long innings, didn't capitalize on good starts. "We will have some senior players returning and I hope we'll play better cricket there". "We did not expect dew will come, but last night it was there", Chandimal said. This is a team performance.
Both of them batted at a snail's pace which put Pakistan under pressure. It was a tough series against India but we learnt a lot from it.
"The boys executed the game plan really well in this series". You can tell when they are in the middle that we are really enjoying it. "Their attitude and discipline is there and that brings the spirit too". Last night it was a little hard to bowl, especially with the dew. We all know that here in Dubai, it spins more than Abu Dhabi.