PALLEKELE: Pakistan won the rain hit One Day International against Sri Lanka by six wickets after Shahid Afridi scored the winning run.
Pakistan needed 136 runs to wing after rain had restricted Sri Lanka’s first innings to 135 for 8. Subsequently the match was reduced to 42 overs a side.
However, Pakistan had suffered an early blow when they lost opener Azhar Ali (3 runs, 2 balls). They had barely recovered when Younus Khan was bowled out by Nuwan Kulasekara with the score on 27.
Captain Misbahul Haq and Mohammad Hafeez then steadied the ship in a 51 run partnership. After Hafeez departed, scoring 37 runs off 57 balls, the captain shared another fruitful partnership with Umar Akmal with the pair almost taking Pakistan home in a 55 run partnership.
However, Haq was run out as he hurried to take a run with Pakistan needing only three runs to win.
Earlier Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene elected to bat after winning the toss against Pakistan in the opening one-day international in Pallekele on Thursday.
Good bowling from Umar Gul and Mohammad Sami restricted Sri Lanka to 135 for 8 when the umpires were forced to call time due to the rain.
Umar ended with figures of 24 for three from his nine overs was the pick of the bowlers. Sami, who is playing his first ODI since 2010, posted a return of 19 runs and three wickets from his six overs.
For Sri Lanka, HDRL Thirimanne’s late flurry of 42 runs helped Sri Lanka post 135 after the top order succumbed to some accurate Pakistani bowling.
The second one-dayer will also be played in Pallekele on Saturday while the last three games will be held in Colombo on June 13, 16 and 18.
The one-dayers will be followed by a three-Test series starting on June 22.
Sri Lanka: Mahela Jayawardene (capt), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Upul Tharanga, Kumar Sangakkara, Dinesh Chandimal, Angelo Mathews, Lahiru Thirimanne, Thisara Perera, Nuwan Kulasekara, Lasith Malinga, Rangana Herath.
Pakistan: Misbah-ul-Haq (capt), Mohammad Hafeez, Azhar Ali, Younis Khan, Umar Akmal, Shahid Afridi, Sarfraz Ahmed, Umar Gul, Saeed Ajmal, Sohail Tanvir, Mohammad Sami.
Umpires: Ranmore Martinesz (SRI) and Paul Reiffel (AUS)
TV umpire: Ruchira Palliyaguruge (SRI)
Match referee: Chris Broad (ENG)