CARDIFF – Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed played a memorable knock of 61 runs to beat Sri Lanka by four wickets and took his country to Champions Trophy semi-finals.
Other than the opener Fakhar Zaman, none of Pakistan’s middle-order batsman could perform to capitalize on the strong opening stand provided by Zaman.
While batting first, Sri Lankans were well poised to cruise Pakistani bowling line and reach to over 300 score in the first innings, but just then skipper Sarfraz Ahmed brought back his key bowlers Muhammad Amir and Junaid back in the attack.
The duo perfectly exploited the pitch condition and reverse-swung the ball to topple Lanka batting. Sri Lanka, from 161/3 slipped to 167/7 within the span of 4 overs.
Earlier, Sri Lanka had lost a couple of wickets on 82 and 83 respectively, but the recovery was well done by Mathews and opener Dickwella.
Gunaratne along with Suranga Lakmal put up a valuable 46-run stand for the 8th wicket before Hasan Ali removed Lakmal for 26.
Hasan Ali then removed Gunaratne (27) in the second last over. Fahim Ashraf chipped in with the last wicket to bowl out Sri Lanka on 236.