Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 2nd ODI: Perera and Mathews help Sri Lanka level series

Perera was named Man of the Match for his outstanding contributions with both the bat and ball

Perera was named Man of the Match for his outstanding contributions with both the bat and ball

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Sri Lanka all-rounder Thisara Perera smashed a quickfire 65 and took three wickets, and captain Angelo Mathews scored a brilliant 93 to help their side beat Pakistan by 77 runs in Hambantota.

Perera and Mathews were well supported by batsman Mahela Jayawardene, who made an excellent 67.

However, Pakistan all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez deserves a lot of credit for scoring a half-century and taking three wickets. Opening batsman Ahmed Shehzad also made a valiant half-century.

Mathews would have been brooding over his decision to bat first early on after opening batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan was caught behind off the bowling of Junaid Khan for 13.

Kumar Sangakkara only made 11 runs before he was caught by Shoaib Maqsood at midwicket off the bowling of Wahab Riaz.

Upul Tharanga managed to make 27 runs before he was caught behind off the bowling of Riaz.

Jayawardene and Mathews stabilised the innings with a 122-run partnership, during which Jayawardene brought up his half-century, before he was clean bowled by Hafeez for 67, which came off 74 balls and included eight boundaries.

Jayawardene scored a fluent 67

Jayawardene scored his 74th ODI half-century

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Seekkuge Prasanna scored one run before he was given out lbw off the bowling of Hafeez.

Ashan Priyanjan fared no better as he was also given out lbw off the bowling of Hafeez, but only for three runs.

Mathews and Perera steadied the innings with an 87-run partnership before Mathews was caught by Hafeez at midwicket off the bowling of Riaz.

Mathews’ stellar knock of 93 came off 115 balls and included eight boundaries.

Mathews hit eight boundaries during his entertaining knock of 93

Mathews hit eight boundaries during his entertaining knock of 93

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Perera ended up making 65 off just 36 deliveries, which included five boundaries and four sixes, before he was run out by Shehzad.

Lasith Malinga failed to trouble the scorers as he was clean bowled by Riaz for a golden duck.

Thanks to Jayawardene, Mathews and Perera, Sri Lanka finished on 310/9 off their 50 overs.

Riaz was the pick of the bowlers with four wickets, while Hafeez snapped up three and Khan chipped in with one.

Chasing a huge target of 311 to win, Pakistan got off to a terrible start as opening batsman Sharjeel Khan was caught by Rangana Herath at mid-on off the bowling of Malinga for nine runs.

Hafeez and Shehzad made up for the early loss of Khan with a 96-run partnership, during which Hafeez registered his half-century, before he was given out lbw off the bowling of Prasanna.

Hafeez’s superb knock of 62 came off 49 balls and included 11 boundaries.

Hafeez made a gutsy 62

Hafeez made a gutsy 62

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Umar Akmal only made one run before he was caught behind off the bowling of Dilshan.

Shehzad went on to score 56 off 80 deliveries, which included six boundaries, before he was caught behind off the bowling of Prasanna.

Shehzad made a valiant 56

Shehzad made a valiant 56

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Pakistan skipper Misbah-ul-Haq mustered 36 runs before he was caught by Nuwan Kulasekara at square leg off the bowling of Herath.

Maqsood scored nine runs before he was given out lbw off the bowling of Herath.

Mathews reviewed the decision immediately after it was initially given not out. Replays showed that the ball was pitching in line and going on to hit leg stump, which led to the third umpire overturning the original decision.

Shahid Afridi made a quickfire 17 before he was caught by Kulasekara at deep cover off the bowling of Perera.

Riaz accumulated five runs before he was caught by Herath at third man off the bowling of Perera.

Perera struck again the very next ball when Fawad Alam was caught by Mathews at cover for 30.

Pakistan were bowled out for 233 when Khan was cleaned up by Malinga for one run.

Perera was the most successful bowler with three wickets, while Malinga, Herath and Prasanna picked up two wickets each and Dilshan claimed one.

Ul-Haq was disappointed to have lost the match, and said: “We had them six down and just needed one more wicket but we couldn’t get it. We kept on losing wickets. Of course. On a wicket like this, he [Ajmal] would have certainly made a big difference.”

Mathews was pleased to have levelled the series at 1-1, and said: “Winning the toss was crucial. It was getting slower and slower as the match went on. We bowled badly in the first 10 overs, but we pulled it back. Spinners came into the party and did a good job. Seekuge was absolutely brilliant.¬†They are coming after a long break, and they will be back in the groove. He [Jayawardene] has a bit of a niggle, and hopefully he will be back for the next game.”

Perera was named Man of the Match, and said: “Angie told me take your time because we were six wickets down. [In the] first over I don’t know what happened. I knew after that I would come back strongly.”

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