Pakistan vs Sri Lanka 2017: 5 reasons why Pakistan lost the Test series
It’s been seven years since Pakistan were forced to move to the UAE to play their 'home' games. Since then though they have made it a fortress. However, that fortress has finally been breached, by a Sri Lankan team who comprehensively put behind them a 9-0 drubbing against India.
Both Tests were competitive and went into the fifth day. It is important to note that Pakistan were not outplayed, but simply made a lot of mistakes which helped Sri Lanka win the series. So, here we look at 5 reasons why Pakistan lost the Test series against Sri Lanka.
#5 Batsmen didn’t convert starts
In the four innings they batted, Pakistan's batsmen crossed the 50-run mark 8 times and only one was converted into a hundred (Asad Shafiq’s 112 in the second innings of the second Test), whereas Sri Lankan batsmen scored two daddy hundreds (155 – Chandimal, 196 – Karunaratne) which set them up for big first innings totals. Most Pakistani batsmen failed to convert their starts, especially in the first innings of both Tests.
The batsmen also lacked consistency. They often went into their shell, defending and blocking almost everything when they were put under pressure. Also, the batsmen got out at key stages of the game. For instance, Azhar Ali was dismissed when he looked in fine touch (85 in the first Test and 59 in the second), while Sarfraz Ahmed played a needless sweep shot in the 79th over of the second Test - on the final day - to get out. At that stage, Pakistan required 91 to win. That wicket opened the floodgates as Pakistan lost their last five wickets for 23 runs.
So, there were no big hundreds, not much resistance and hardly any contribution from the lower order.