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The Report by Karthik Krishnaswamy
Angelo Mathews said he would continue batting at No. 5 until Kumar Sangakkara's retirement © AFP
Misbah-ul-Haq, the Pakistan captain, chose to bowl in the first Test, terming his decision as "situational" with the first day having been lost to rain. With clouds overhead and a pitch with a bit of moisture under the surface, Misbah hoped his bowlers would be able to bowl Sri Lanka out early.
Angelo Mathews, the Sri Lanka captain, said he was "very happy" to be batting first, as he expected the pitch to turn later on in the match. Asked where he would bat following the retirement of Mahela Jayawardene, Mathews said he would stay at No. 5 for now, and take a longer-term decision after Kumar Sangakkara's impending retirement.
Both sides went in with two seamers and two spinners, with Pakistan going with the expected spin pair of Yasir Shah and Zulfiqar Babar and Sri Lanka choosing Dilruwan Perera ahead of Tharindu Kaushal as Rangana Herath's slow-bowling partner. Kithuruwan Vithanage was named at No. 7, leaving Kusal Perera having to wait a little longer for his Test debut.
Sri Lanka: 1 Kaushal Silva, 2 Dimuth Karunaratne, 3 Kumar Sangakkara, 4 Lahiru Thirimanne, 5 Angelo Mathews (capt.), 6 Dinesh Chandimal (wk), 7 Kithuruwan Vithanage, 8 Dhammika Prasad, 9 Dilruwan Perera, 10 Rangana Herath, 11 Nuwan Pradeep
Pakistan: 1 Ahmed Shehzad, 2 Mohammad Hafeez, 3 Azhar Ali, 4 Younis Khan, 5 Misbah-ul-Haq (capt.), 6 Asad Shafiq, 7 Sarfraz Ahmed (wk), 8 Wahab Riaz, 9 Junaid Khan, 10 Yasir Shah, 11 Zulfiqar Babar
Karthik Krishnaswamy is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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