Pakistan's Azhar Ali smashed a second century in successive matches Wednesday to leave the final Test against Sri Lanka poised for an intriguing finish.
Azhar made 136 as Pakistan wriggled out of a corner to post 299-8 in their second innings by stumps on the fourth day in Pallekele, a lead of 188 runs with two wickets in hand. The tourists now have three sessions on the fifth day to conjure a series-levelling win on a wearing pitch that will offer some turn to offie Saeed Ajmal.
But Lanka remain favourites to win or draw the match and clinch their first series victory in three years since beating New Zealand at home in 2009. They won the first Test in Galle by 209 runs before the second in Colombo was drawn. Azhar, who made 157 in the Colombo Test, held the innings together for six hours, hitting 13 boundaries in his fourth Test century and the third this year.
Brief Scores: Pakistan 226 and 299-8 (Mohammad Hafeez 52, Azhar Ali 136, Asad Shafiq 55 not out) v Sri Lanka 337.
Clarke stunned as Australia thrashed
Manchester: Australia captain Michael Clarke admitted he hadn't seen a 4-0 one-day campaign defeat by England coming after his side made some unwanted history here.
England cruised to a seven-wicket win on Tuesday in a rain-affected fifth and final ODI, triumphing in convincing style under the Old Trafford floodlights as they made it 10 straight victories in this format. But for Australia this was their heaviest series defeat in the 40-year history of ODIs.
Unpaid players to take legal action
Sydney: The Federation of International Cricketers' Association (FICA) said it will join players in legal action over unpaid wages by the Bangladesh Premier League, calling the situation "a joke". The inaugural T20 league was held in February and attracted a host of overseas players, including Australians, but at least 12 have not been paid their full dues, amounting to over $600,000, FICA said.