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Feb 25, 2014
An unbeaten 59-run stand for the fifth wicket between Misbah-ul-Haq and Umar Akmal has put Pakistan back on track in their chase of 297 against Sri Lanka in the opening match of the Asia Cup 2014.
Pakistan reached 180 for four after 34 overs, requiring 117 more runs to win from remaining 16 overs.
Both the batsmen are starting to open up against the Sri Lankan bowlers, picking up boundaries at regular intervals and rotating the strike easily. Earlier in the innings, Sohaib Maqsood’s dismissal in a bizarre manner put Pakistan under more pressure.
Maqsood went after a very short delivery from Sri Lanka spinner Sachithra Senanayake, but found the fielder at deep midwicket. He scored 17 off 27 balls. Pakistan require 156 more runs to win from 22 overs.
This was after Sri Lanka fought back with quick wickets in form of Mohammad Hafeez and Ahmed Shehzad as Pakistan slipped to for three after 14 overs. While Shehzad was cleaned up by Chaturanga de Silva for 28, Hafeez was trapped in front of the wickets for 18. This was after Shehzad and Hafeez lead Pakistan’s recovery with their 49-run stand for the second wicket.
Earlier in the match, Lahiru Thirimanne slammed his second One-Day International (ODI) century while Kumar Sangakkara and Angelo Mathews struck fifties, to help Sri Lanka post a challenging target of 297 against Pakistan.
Electing to bat first, Sri Lanka squandered a perfect opportunity of posting a huge total as they reached 296 for six in their allotted 50 overs.
Thirimanne faced 110 balls, smashed 11 boundaries and a six to score 102, and added 161 runs for the second wicket with Sangakkara to help Sri Lanka consolidate their stand, before Pakistan fought and pulled back things in control.
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