Pakistan staring defeat in the face
Pakistan appeared headed for a heavy loss in the opening Test with Sri Lanka at Galle as they ended day three 474 runs adrift of the hosts with seven wickets remaining.
Sri Lanka dismissed the tourists for 100 in their first innings this morning and then, after tacking on 137 for five declared to their first-innings 472, reduced Pakistan to 36 for three at stumps.
The day began with Pakistan on 48 for five in their first innings, and the wickets soon started tumbling again with only debutant Mohammad Ayub offering any resistance of note as Pakistan stumbled to treble figures.
Suraj Randiv claimed 4-13 and fellow spinner Rangana Herath 3-30, including the controversial scalp of Younus Khan.
Younus was adjudged lbw for 29, despite an inside edge, and, with no Decision Review System in this series, the veteran batsman he no option but to go.
Adnan Akmal was run out, attempting a second run off Herath, to leave Pakistan 88 for seven and the tail never looked like wagging on a pitch offering plenty of turn.
Randiv and Herath respectively trapped Abdur Rehman and Ayub in front, the latter for 35, before Randiv had Umar Gul caught behind to end the innings and herald lunch.
Sri Lanka surprisingly opted not to enforce the follow-on, instead batting for one and a half sessions.
Tillakaratne Dilshan dominated an opening stand of 81 with Tharanga Paranavitana until they were lbw in consecutive overs, the latter to Saeed Ajmal for 25 and the former to Junaid Khan for 56.
Ajmal cheaply had Kumar Sangakkara held at extra-cover as Sri Lanka reached 93 for three at tea.
Junaid then struck twice in as many overs, having Mahela Jayawardene caught behind for 14 and Thilan Samaraweera held at slip for 15. Angelo Mathews and Prasanna Jayawardene batted cautiously until the declaration came.
The hosts soon broke through as Mohammad Hafeez edged Nuwan Kulasekara to slip.
Things then got worse when Azhar Ali was caught at gully off Herath and, in the next over, opener Taufeeq Umar played on to Kulasekara.
Younus and nightwatchman Ajmal survived to resume tomorrow.