Misbah missed Ajmal in Hambantota

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Captain Misbah-ul-Haq lamented the absence of spinner Saeed Ajmal, as Pakistan slipped to a 77-run defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka in Tuesday's second ODI in Hambantota.

Captain Misbah-ul-Haq lamented the absence of spinner Saeed Ajmal, as Pakistan slipped to a 77-run defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka in Tuesday's second ODI in Hambantota.

The hosts amassed a formidable score of 310 for nine on the back of captain Angelo Mathews' commanding 93 and a quickfire half-ton from all-rounder Thisara Perera – and later restricted the opposition to an insufficient 233 all out.

The tourists were without the services of Ajmal throughout. Recently reported for a suspect bowling action, he is currently undergoing testing in Australia – and isn't expected to return for the series decider in Dambulla later this week.

"We missed Ajmal in this game. He would have made a big difference on a wicket like this. We had them six down and needed one more wicket quickly, but that did not happen. When we batted, we kept losing wickets and could not build partnerships," rued Misbah.

Perera was named Man of the Match after striking a quartet of sixes and quintet of fours en route to a cavalier 65 from just 36 deliveries. He was particularly fruitful during an 87-run alliance inside 10 overs alongside Mathews.

The right-arm seamer later recovered from an expensive opening over, during which batsman Mohammad Hafeez struck three successive boundaries, to secure three important wickets.

"Angelo told me take my time, because we were six wickets down. The first over, I don't know what happened. I knew after that I would come back strongly," concluded Perera.

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