Azhar Ali's fight keeps Pakistan in hunt in Abu Dhabi Test

ANI | Updated: Sep 30, 2017 20:04 IST

Abu Dhabi [UAE], Sept. 30 (ANI): Azhar Ali's fighting half century helped Pakistan to take control on the third day of the ongoing first Test of the two-match series against Sri Lanka at Sheikh Zayed Stadium on Saturday.

At Stumps on Day 3, Pakistan were 266-4 with Ali holding fort against a probing spin-attack and are 153 runs adrift of Sri Lanka's first inning total of 419.

Ali, who was unbeaten on 74, saw Babar Azam fell for 28 in the last over of the day. He has made sure Pakistan do not concede a big lead in the first innings, having hit only one boundary in his 26th Test half century.

The right-handed batsman has so far hit just three boundaries during his 297 minutes of batting.

Openers Shan Masood (59) and Sami Aslam (51) provided Pakistan a prolific start as the duo shared a 114-run opening stand and laid a solid foundation after they resumed at 64 without loss.

However, Sri Lanka, hit back by removing both of them in a space of two runs and send some jitters in the Pakistan camp.

Ali then added 79 for the third wicket with Asad Shafiq who made 39 to take the fight to the visitors.

However, it was veteran left-arm spinner Rangana Herath who took the priced wicket of Shafiq and ended the partnership.

Herath was the most successful bowler for Sri Lanka as he finished the day with 2-47.

Earlier, Sri Lankan skipper Dinesh Chandimal scored a brilliant 155 not out while Niroshan Dickwella made a career best 83, to post a big 419 on the second day of the Abu Dhabi Test.

Chandimal remained unbeaten over 546 minutes with 14 boundaries, which left Pakistan's bowlers frustrated on a flat pitch.

Diruwan Perera added 33 to the Sri Lankan scoreboard.

Fast bowler Mohammad Abbas (3-75) and leg-spinner Yasir Shah (3-120) sported the best figures for Pakistan. (ANI)