Hassan, Imam bring series deciding victory for Pakistan

Source:  ARY News Published in Sports on Wednesday, October 18, 2017

ABU DHABI: Debutant Imam-ul-Haque’s century and pacer Hassan Ali’s five wicket haul helped Pakistan secure a series deciding victory against Sri Lanka in the third ODI here at Abu Dhabi, here on Wednesday.

Earlier Sri Lanka scored 208 runs and lost all its wickets in the 49th over of their innings after batting first in the third game of a five match ODI series.

Debutant Imam-ul-Haque scored a steady 100 to help Pakistan chase the total for the loss of three wickets.

Earlier. Hasan Ali shattered the Sri Lankan batting line with his five wicket haul. Hassan Ali has now passed Liam Plunkett and Rashid Khan as the top ODI wicket-taker of 2017.

Pakistan made two changes in the playing XI today. Opener Ahmed Shahzad and all-rounder Imad Wasim were dropped to be replaced by new comer Imam-ul-Haq and Fahim Ashraf.

Sri Lanka have also made two changes by replacing Kusal Mendis and Suranga Lakmal with Dushmantha Chameera and Chamara Kapugedara.

Sri Lanka, who won the two matches test series against Pakistan 2-0 for first time in UAE, failed to take the winning momentum to the ODI format. They must reach for a special performance to break their abysmal streak.

Pakistan’s rebirth as ODI cricket power after they beaten the world in Champions Trophy in England this year, they have begun to play like world-beaters. The new generation players have injected fresh energy. In second ODI against Sri Lanka on Monday, Babar Azam and Shadab Khan helped Pakistan to win the match after they lost six wickets on the score of 101.

While Sri Lanka passing through a lean spell as the nine-match losing streak is their worst in 30 years. They will need an extra effort to snatch the momentum back and win the series deciding match today.

Pakistan have won eight of their last nine one day matches, have now, begun to acquire an aura of invincibility.

The remaining two ODI matches of the series will be played in Sharjah.

Pakistan: Fakhar Zaman,Imam-ul-Haq,Babar Azam,Mohammad Hafeez,Shoaib Malik, Sarfraz Ahmed (capt/WK), Faheem Ashraf, Shadab Khan, Hasan Ali, Rumman Raees, Junaid Khan

Sri Lanka: Upal Tharang (capt), Niroshan Dickwella, LD Chandimal, HDRL Thirimanne, CK Kapugedera, TAM Siriwardana, NLTC Perera, A Dananjaya, JDF Vandersay, PVD Chameera, PLS Gamage.