Sri Lankan spinner Rangana Herath (centre) emerged as the pick of the bowlers once again in this Test when he finished with figures of 5 for 57, taking the final wicket of Wahab Riaz © AFP
Aug 17, 2014
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Emotional scenes at the Sinhalese Sports Club as Mahela Jayawardene and the rest of the Sri Lankan team take a lap of honour around the ground. Jayawardene is carried on the shoulders of Chanaka Welegedera and Dhammika Prasad as the everyone present at the SSC is on their feet. Students from Nalanda College, Jayawardene’s alma mater present one final guard-of-honour for the flamboyant batting legend, who is congratulated by several dignitaries including the Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajpaksa, members and officials of the Pakistani team as well as important alumni of his alma mater.
Fantasic win for the home team and a perfect tribute to Jayawardene from the entire team. The Sri Lankans were simply clinical in their approach and excelled in all the departments throughout the match. It has been a great turnaround for Sri Lanka, who lost the Test series to South Africa 0-1 in July. While the Pakistan team will be happy to have found a gem of a wicket-keeper batsman in Safraz Ahmed, who scored his fourth consecutive half-century in the fourth innings in which the rest of the team was collapsing around him. Sarfraz’s knock helped Pakistan avoid a sub-100 total. The main focus of the match, other than the retiring legend of course, was Rangana Herath’s spectacular display with the ball. He finished with figures of 14 for 184, including a nine-wicket haul in the first innings.
Mahela Jayawardene gets presented with mementos from the Nalanda College, the Sinhalese Sports Club, the Sri Lankan team manager Michael Zoysa and Moin Khan.
Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq walks up to Russell Arnold to the post-match presentation. “The way Rangana Herath was simply excellent and he was the main reason we got out.” “Not only the Sri Lankan team and fans but cricket fans all over the world are going to miss him.”
The man-of-the-match award was of no surprise to anyone as the chief destroyer of Pakistan Ranagan Herath
Herath: “The best game that I have ever played. I am trying to get better with each game. We learnt a lot of things from Mahela and I want to convey my thanks to him.”
Herath had to return to the podium to collect the man-of-the-series award as well. The victorious captain Angelo Mathews was visibly happy as he walked up to the dias to collect the cash awards and the series trophy.
Jayawardene: “Dont know what to say as I promise I won’t cry. Very proud of the way the boys have handled themselves throughout the tour. Proud of the Pakistan team for the sportsmanship and the fantastic contest they have provided us throughout the Tests. I’d like to thank all the coaches, past cricketers and everyone else who have made me who I am today. I’d like to thank my school Nalanda for shaping me for the person who I am today. I’d like to thank the SSC for guiding me through my early cricketing career. Let me thank his excellency the President for gracing the occasion here and I’d like to thank all the fans who have come in huge numbers here. Thank you for all the support all these years and you guys are simply fantastic. I’d to thank my parents for being with me from day one and to my wife for supporting me at the toughest of times. And last but not the least, I’d like to thank my team-mates, especially Sanga for making my career a fantastic experience. I promise I have a little bit left in me and I am going to give every bit of my energy during the World Cup.”
Huge round of appluase everytime he mentiones any one of the names. He gets presented a memento from the President Rajpaksa, whose entrance is marked with firecrackers.
Mathews is presented with the series trophy as he dedicates it to the Sri Lankan batting legend. “Mahela has been a pillar of strength for the team and he is the smartest guy in our side and his efforts for the team are commendable. I’d also like to thank his parents for bringing up the way they have.” When asked about future of veteran keeper-batsman Kumar Sangakkara, he said,” I am trying to keep him in the side for as long as possible. We cannot lose two legends in such a short span of time.”
Congratulations to Sri Lanka for a fantastic 2-0 series sweep. Let’s see what the five-match One-Day International series has in store for us. Can Sri Lanka extend their domination to the limited-overs format? Or will Pakistan use that opportunity to avenge the losses in the Tests? This Amit Banerjee signing off for now. Do stay tuned for exclusive coverage of the upcoming ODIs as well as other cricketing action from across the world.
Pakistan 165/9 I Overs 52.1
Saeed Ajmal 3(9)
OUT! Wahab Riaz c Silva b Herath 17(46)
Its all over! Mahela Jayawardene’s Test career comes to a grand close! Wahab Riaz is the last man out and his dismissal marks the Sri Lankan 105-run victory and a 2-0 series sweep and Junaid Khan fails to turn up to bat due to the injury that he sustained in the first innings. Riaz tries to slog the Herath delivery down the leg-side but manages to send it high up in the air on the opposite direction. Kausal Silva and Kumar Sangakkara run towards to claim the catch and collide, but Silva emerges with the ball. Fifth wicket for Rangana Herath, who finishes with match figures of 14 for 184.
Pakistan 151/8 I Overs 49.1
Wahab Riaz 7(39), Saeed Ajmal 0(0)
OUT! Sarfraz Ahmed c Sangakkara b Welegedera 55(89)
Sarfraz is finally dismissed and so end Pakistan’s hopes of getting any favourable result. Sarfraz walks back to the pavilion after putting up a brave fight against the wicket-hungry Sri Lankan bowlers. Mahela Jayawardene’s Test career may end any moment now.
Pakistan 144/7 I Overs 45.4
Sarfaraz 50(80), Wahab 5(28)
Sarfraz completes his fifty! What determination and grit displayed by the young glovesman from Karachi! Sarfraz becomes the only Pakistani wicket-keeper to score four consecutive fifty-plus scores. Sarfraz and Wahab are delaying the inevitable, and however unlikely it may sound, a draw might be on the back of Sarfraz’s mind right now
Pakistan 132/7 I Overs 42
Sarfaraz 40(65), Wahab 3(18)
Sri Lanka’s best bowlers in this innings Rangana Herath and Dhammika Prasad start off the proceedings. Herath almost picks a wicket first ball. Wahab Riaz though has to face some hostile short balls from Dhammika Prasad. He has softened up the tail-ender. He gets hit once and then manages to duck underneath to others.
The Sri Lankan bowlers ripped through the Pakistan top-order in a terrific display of bowling which excelled in both the spin and pace departments that left the tourists reeling at 127 for seven after 40 overs. Pakistan need another 144 runs to win to level the series and their hopes are pinned on the last experienced batsman in the form of Sarfraz Ahmed at the crease.
The day began on an excited note as Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara stepped out to bat. The veterans were expected to put up another century partnership, something which they have achieved eighteen times in the past. The SSC was decked in marooon and red, official colours of Nalanda College, Jayawardene’s alma mater. The fans were also praying for a century from Jayawardene to make the dashing batsman’s farewell a memorable one. Both milestones were achieved as the century partnership was brought up in no time and Jayawardene brought up his 50th half-century with a boundary off Ajmal. Hi, I am Amit Banerjee and I will be bringing you CricketCountry’s live updates of the final day’s play in Colombo. The doyen of Sri Lankan cricket, Mahela Jayawardene bows out of Test cricket today and his team are on top. Lets hope he gets the farewell that his glittering career truly deserves.
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