Pallekele: Rain returned to haunt this Test series after the promise of an exciting game in Pallekele on the first day, when the bowlers dominated and the teams finished even. But the threat of poor weather would always remain at the venue. It had rained before the Test and early on the second day as well. A short sunny spell an hour before the start gave hope that was crushed when the showers returned, grew heavy and ensured a washout.
The rain took a break off and on, but each downpour did significant damage. The umpires had a look at the conditions at 2pm, and then again, following some more rain, at 3.05pm. After a discussion with the curators, the day`s play was abandoned five minutes later.
The events gave respite to Sri Lanka, with the momentum being against them after they were reduced to 44 for 3 by a menacing spell of fast bowling led by Junaid Khan. Pakistan were bowled out for 226, but their bowlers had fought back and, in conditions favouring swing and movement, would have backed themselves to do more damage on the second day. With rain also forecast for the coming days, Pakistan`s chances of levelling the series only become more difficult.
The third day`s play has been scheduled for a 9.45am start, 15 minutes earlier than usual.
BDST: 1920 HRS, July 9, 2012
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