There is nothing more exhilarating in a cricket match than to see your favourite team chasing a big total set by the team batting first. The players’ anxiety, the fans prayers, and the tension all around the stadium is what makes the game of cricket so beautiful.
There is no better feeling in this world for a team and supporters alike when they see the winning runs being hit by the batsmen out in the middle.
Taking part in a successful chase while being the visiting team makes the occasion a lot more special and the players feel a greater sense of achievement. India’s famous run chase against England at Lord’s in the Natwest Series final of 2002 will always be remembered by players and fans alike.
Sri Lanka, however, has not been a happy ground for visiting teams while batting 2nd. There have not been many instances where a high score has been chased down at Sri Lanka. Pakistan and India are the only two teams who have enjoyed reasonable success while chasing at Sri Lanka.
There have been some thrilling matches played between these 3 sides at Colombo, Pallekelle, and Hambantota.
In this article, we take a look at the Top 5 run chases by visiting teams in Sri Lanka. This list includes 1 Test match, 2 ODIs, and 2 T20Is.
#1 Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 3rd Test: Sri Lanka v Pakistan at Pallekele, Jul 3-7, 2015
In this historic match, the evergreen Younis Khan led the battle as Pakistan recorded their highest ever successful run chase in Test cricket against Sri Lanka in the 3rd and final Test match of their series. This incredible victory was also the 2nd highest run chase by an Asian side and the 6th highest overall.
This win also propelled them to the 3rd place in the ICC Test rankings, as they won the series 2-1. It was also the joint-biggest margin of victory in Test match history for a team scoring 350-plus runs to win.
Having won the toss, Pakistan opted to take the field. After a brilliant century by Dimuth Karunaratne and a 5 wicket haul by leggie Yasir Shah, Sri Lanka were restricted to 278. During Pakistan’s first innings, the Sri Lankan bowlers troubled the Pakistani batsmen right from the beginning. 3 wickets each for Dhamika Prasad, Tharindu Kaushal, and Nuwan Pradeep led to Pakistan being bowled out for 215.
Sri Lanka performed better in the 2nd innings as they reached a total of 313 thanks to an amazing century by their captain Angelo Mathews. Having set Pakistan a target of 377 and picking up 2 quick wickets, Sri Lanka thought they had the victory in their bag, but Pakistan had other ideas in mind.
Shan Masood and Younis Khan led the way as they set up a historic 242 run 4th wicket partnership, with both of them scoring centuries. This amazing partnership brought Pakistan closer to victory. After Masood’s departure, out came Misbah ul Haq. Along with Younis, Misbah took the attack to the Sri Lankans and created history when he finished off the match with a six.
Result : Pakistan 215 (Sarfraz 78*, Azhar 52) and 380 for 3 (Younis 171*, Masood 125, Misbah 59*) beat Sri Lanka 278 (Karunaratne 130, Yasir 5-78) and 313 (Mathews 122, Chandimal 67, Imran 5-58) by seven wickets