Mon, 20 Jan 2020

Rawalpindi - Test cricket made its long-awaited return to Pakistan after a deadly attack in 2009, with the home team led by fast bowler Naseem Shah dominating Sri Lanka on Wednesday.

At close Dhananjaya de Silva was unbeaten on 38 and Niroshan Dickwella not out 11 as Sri Lanka spoiled a good 96-run start given by skipper Dimuth Karunaratne (59) and Oshada Fernando (40).

Karunaratne hit nine boundaries in his 110-ball knock.

He also had Angelo Mathews caught in the slips for 31. Mathews added 62 runs for the fifth wicket with De Silva.

"Whenever I bowled a good delivery, they supported me. I was very excited that I was playing before the home crowd and got two wickets."

Naseem was the stand-out bowler in the morning as he generated pace, hitting Karunaratne on the helmet in the 19th over.

Sri Lanka are on the first Test tour of Pakistan since a gun-and-rocket attack in March 2009 killed eight people and wounded visiting players and officials, plunging Pakistan into sporting isolation.

"Of course, a historic day in Pakistan cricket and we all are excited," said Azhar. "We want to make this occasion memorable by winning."

And the fans were over the moon.

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