In what is turning out to be an absolute thrilling Test, Pakistan are trying their best to beat Sri Lanka with just 126 runs to chase and seven wickets in hand
While playing in just his sixth Test match, Abdullah Shafique made a coming-of-age century in a very difficult situation. With captain Babar Azam by his side, the 24-year-old showed great character and technicality to see away a hoard of quality Sri Lanka spinners. In the five matches, he has played so far the Sialkot born has made 547 runs at an average of 68.37. He has also scored a century (136*) before this match in the nine innings he played. With the addition of this match’s score, his average would jump to the mid-70s.
Talking of the match, Sri Lanka gave a target of 222 in the first innings on the back of Dinesh Chandimal’s 76. Pakistan had a poor first inning where they faltered at just 218. Babar Azam came up with a gritty 119 while all the other batters could not do much. Pakistan’s second top scorer was Yasir Shah with a score of 18!
In the second inning, Sri Lanka got three half-century scores from their players with Chandimal continuing his great form. The 33-year-old remained stranded on one side while Sri Lanka’s batting lineup bled out from the other. They still managed to improve on their first innings score at put 337 on the scoreboard.
Coming on to chase what seemed like a big total on the pitch, Pakistan’s openers gave a good start with Imam-ul-Haq (35) and Abdullah Shafique (100*) seeing away the Sri Lankan charge. At the moment, Pakistan looks comfortable with new batter Mohammad Rizwan (0*) and Abdullah Shafique (103) set to take the game into the away team’s bag. Babar Azam was the latest to depart playing a negative line off Prabath Jayasuriya and totally missing the ball.
Let’s look at some tweets celebrating the batting masterclass of Abdullah Shafique.
A crucial century from Abdullah Shafique ?
— ICC (@ICC) July 19, 2022
Incredible Abdullah Shafique, 22-year-old, playing just his 6th Test match, scored hundred while chasing 342 runs in the 4th innings – he has 2 hundreds & 4 fifties from 6 Tests in his career. pic.twitter.com/KMKvqiTWlA
— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) July 19, 2022
What a brilliant start to Abdullah Shafique's Test career:
— Saj Sadiq (@SajSadiqCricket) July 19, 2022
ABDULLAH SHAFIQUE, TAKE A BOW! Second Test hundred for Abdullah. When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Phenomenal cricketer. What a star he is ? #SLvPAK
— Farid Khan ???? (@_FaridKhan) July 19, 2022
?? Abdullah Shafique is simply a gem of a talent. The shot selection and confidence is remarkable. He had played only three first-class matches before making test debut and within no time has become reliable batter for Pakistan. The next big thing is Abdullah Shafique! #SLvPAK
— Arfa Feroz Zake (@ArfaSays_) July 19, 2022
2nd hundred for Abdullah Shafique I think he is a blessing for Pakistan I think the best Pakistani opener of this century Well Played Youngmen and many more to comes ???? pic.twitter.com/mBYRf8NRMG
— Hassan Zahid | HBD Hamza? ?? (@Iam_hassan10) July 19, 2022
2nd innings day 4, what you expect from Abdullah. A man with proper solid technique/defense after Babar. He's find of Misbah. When everybody was criticizing on him in NZ tour. But Misbah said he is our future. Work hard when no one believes in you.#PAKvsSL#AbdullahShafique pic.twitter.com/cFjk2fia01
— Abdullah Asif ?? (@AbdullahAsif_) July 19, 2022
— Rab Nawaz ?? (@RN31888) July 19, 2022
Abdullah Shafique in the short career so far has shown superb skillset and ability that he's here to dominate and play long
— Mani (@Manisays56) July 19, 2022
Pakistan and Sri Lanka would clash in the second Test of the series in Galle starting on 24th July.