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Alam leads Pakistan fightback

A MAIDEN century from debutant opener Fawad Alam helped Pakistan steal the momentum to lead by 28 runs in the second test against Sri Lanka in Colombo yesterday.

Pakistan overhauled a 150-run, first-innings deficit and finished the second day on 178-1.

Alam was on 102 from 153 balls, including six boundaries and a six. He pulled left-arm spinner Rangana Herath for a six and the next ball pushed the ball to third-man for a couple to reach his 100.

"I can't explain how I feel but I am absolutely delighted," Alam said.

The left-hander's innings included an 85-run opening stand with Khurram Manzoor and an unbroken 93-run partnership with captain Younis Khan, who was 35 not out.

"I am glad that for him and for Pakistan his hundred has come at the right time. I am very pleased the way he has performed," coach Intikhab Alam said.

Khan survived a confident LBW appeal on 4 that was turned down by Australian umpire Daryl Harper.

Pakistan started the second day with little hope having conceded the hosts a healthy 74-run lead in the first innings and still seven wickets to be taken.

However, seamer Umar Gul and spinner Saeed Ajmal took four wickets apiece to restrict Sri Lanka's innings to 240, removing its last seven first-innings wickets for 76 runs.

Later, Alam and Manzoor built on the platform created by the bowlers before Herath intervened to dismiss Manzoor for 38 through a catch to wicketkeeper Tillakaratne Dilshan. Herath finished the day with 1-53.

Pakistan was all out on the opening day for a paltry 90 runs.


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