Pakistan batsman Azhar Ali says his team can chase a total of 300 in the final innings as they go in search of series-levelling victory in the second and final Test against Sri Lanka in Dubai.
At stumps on day three Pakistan reduced Sri Lanka to 34/5 but the visitors still enjoy a lead of 254 with five wickets remaining in their second innings.
Pakistan were bowled out for just 262 in their first innings in reply to Sri Lanka’s score of 482 but the home team fought back late in the final session to give themselves hope of a favourable result.
Azhar told reporters after Sunday’s play: “We were left with 15 overs to have a crack at them and we thought it was a good opportunity. They had got a big lead but then third innings is important.
“It has given us a bit of hope. We thought that we will be left with a big target to chase, but this (final) session has given us a little bit of hope.
“Hopefully we will have a good session tomorrow and bowl them out cheaply. Chasing 300 is possible on this track.”
Azhar top-scored for his team in the first innings with 59 but was disappointed that he and a few other batsmen did not capitalise on good starts.
However, the 32-year-old Azhar is still positive they can turn their fortunes around.
Azhar continued: “These kind of wickets that you get here, you need to make it big. It’s a slow wicket and hard to get a start, but once you get settled it becomes easy. It’s disappointing that even in the first game, lot of us – including me – had got starts and couldn’t kick on.
“But we are still positive. The guys are playing well. Everyone wants to make it big. It has not happened yet but we have one innings left and hopefully someone will make it big. You never know in this game.”
Pakistan are one-nil down in the two-match series after losing the first Test in Abu Dhabi by 21 runs.
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