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Sarfraz defiant as bowlers put Sri Lanka on top

Pradeep, Prasad grab three wickets each as Pakistan ends second day of final Test at 209 for 9, trailing by 69

Sarfraz defiant as bowlers put Sri Lanka on top - Cricket News
Sri Lanka's bowlers put the team on top on Day 2.
Nuwan Pradeep (3 for 26) and Dhammika Prasad (3 for 78) helped Sri Lanka take the upper hand as Pakistan ended the second day of the third and final Test at 209 for 9, trailing by 69 runs.
After being bowled out for 278, Sri Lanka's pacers maintained immaculate control on Saturday (July 4), with the fielders also playing their part effectively. 

Moments of indecision hurt Pakistan. Shan Masood, playing his first Test in the series, was set up superbly by Prasad, who got him lbw with a sucker-punch yorker. Then, Ahmed Shehzad, who looked good in patches, nicked an awayswinger from Pradeep to Dinesh Chandimal.
Pakistan’s hopes of steadying the innings fell on Younis Khan (3), who looked solid during his time at the crease. But the pressure of a stagnant scorecard got to him, as an attempt to pinch a run resulted in his dismissal. An alert Kaushal Silva ran in from short midwicket and hurled the stumps down at the bowler’s end as Younis was caught well short of the crease in the last over before lunch. 

Pakistan was 85 for 3, after a brief rain interval, when Sri Lanka prised another wicket. Asad Shafiq (15), who was let off at slip earlier in the session, was trapped lbw by Prasad, playing across the line to an incoming delivery that was hitting middle. 

When rain reared its head for the second of three instances during the day, tea was called 10 minutes before the scheduled break, and perhaps it played a part in Azhar Ali's dismissal when play resumed. Batting beautifully till then, he added only five more runs to his score to bring up his half-century before falling to Pradeep for 52. 

A groin strain to Misbah-ul-Haq forced him to bat at No. 7, but he didn't last long as he was adjudged leg before, Pakistan using a review in vain.

However, Sarfraz Ahmed, slotted at 6, put up a brave fight, remaining unbeaten on 72 from 94 balls, including six fours. At 152 for 7, the situation looked bleak for Pakistan, but Sarfraz shepherded the tail, adding 45 runs with Yasir Shah for the eighth wicket.

Sri Lanka plucked two more wickets on either side of another rain break before the extended final session came to an end.

Earlier, the first 20 minutes of the day clearly belonged to Yasir Shah, the leg-spinner, who took the final Sri Lankan wicket of Pradeep as the home side added just six runs to its overnight total to post 278.
In doing so, Yasir also became only the second overseas spinner after Shane Warne to take three five-wicket hauls in a Test series in Sri Lanka. With 59 wickets, he is also second on the list after Alf Valentine, the West Indies spinner, to have the most scalps in his first ten Tests. Valentine’s left-arm spin had netted him 62 victims after ten Tests, a figure Yasir could still breach in this Test.

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