Pakistan defeated Sri Lanka in the second ODI by 32 runs of the five-match series in Abu Dhabi. Chasing a target of 220 runs, Sri Lanka started off the chase in a disappointing manner and were reduced to 93 for 7 before Upul Tharanga and Jeffrey Vandersay compiled a partnership of 76 runs for the 8th wicket. Tharanga went on to register a ton in Abu Dhabi but failed to take his team over the line as Sri Lanka were bundled out for 187.
Sri Lanka skipper Tharanga blamed the batsmen for the defeat and said, “The bowlers bowled really well to keep them to 219. If we had hung on with the bat, it became easier. Thirimanne’s wicket was the turning point. The spinners made use of the track pretty well. Vandersay batted well and supported me. It is a good moment for me but disappointed that we lost the game.”
Spinnner Shadab Khan who was adjudged man of the match for his three wickets and unbeaten half-century suggested that he was looking for an opportunity to prove his worth with the bat.
“I was not getting opportunity to bat and I thought today was my first and last chance to shine with the bat. It was just a simple plan to bat out 50 overs. We are bowling well in tandem and we were confident of defending the target. In the team meeting we had discussed to bowl the googly to Chandimal. My aim is to win the player of the series. I bowl according to the situation.”
Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed hailed Shadab’s all-round performance and said, “The match position was such that I had to be harsh on the players (on shouting at his players). But the boys understand the situation and I even apologise to them after the game. We didn’t bat well today and collapsed. Shadab showed his composure and Azam has been playing well. No praise is enough for Azam. He has to adjust at the Test level and he is still a youngster, who will only improve with experience. The options were available but we had to bat better. We’ll see how the conditions are for the next match and decide whether to bat first or second. We try to give as much confidence as possible to the youngsters and once they have our confidence, it is seen on the field.”