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Pak beat SL as ODIs return to Karachi 

Karachi, September 30

Pakistan marked the return of ODI cricket in Karachi after 10 years with a 67-run victory over Sri Lanka in the second ODI today. Babar Azam formed the backbone of Pakistan’s strong total of 305/7 as he smashed 115 off 105 balls. Babar also became the fastest Pakistani batsman to complete 1,000 ODI runs in a calendar year in 19 matches.

In the absence of some key players who pulled out of the tour due to security concerns, Sri Lanka were bowled out for 238 in 46.5 overs. Shehan Jayasuriya (96) missed out on a maiden ODI hundred and Dasun Shanaka made a career-best 68. Left-arm fast bowler Usman Shinwari rattled Sri Lanka’s inexperienced top order and reduced the visitors to 28/5 before Jayasuriya and Shanaka shared a 177-run stand. Shinwari returned and broke the partnership by having Jayasuriya caught behind.

A power failure at the National Stadium disrupted play for 26 minutes during Sri Lanka’s run-chase. It was not a packed house at the 32,000-capacity National Stadium, where Sri Lanka was the last team to play an ODI in 2009. But still around 12,000 cricket enthusiasts braved the strict security checkpoints under hot and humid conditions and were enthralled by Babar’s imperious 11th ODI hundred.

Brief scores: Pakistan: 305/7 (Azam 115, Zaman 54; Hasaranga 2/63); Sri Lanka: 238 (Jayasuriya 96; Shanaka 68; Shinwari 5/51, Shadab 2/76).

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