Test cricket finally returns to Pakistan as they will be hosting a 2-match series against Sri Lanka which will be the first since March 2009. Pakistan, who were No.1 in Test cricket three years ago, are currently placed No.8 in the rankings. They also lost each of their last three series in this format. Sri Lanka, on the other hand, has been unpredictable in the longer format over the last 3 years while being on a decline in white-ball cricket. They won Test series against Pakistan in UAE and defeated South Africa both home and away.
All the key stats and numbers ahead of the first-ever Test series in Pakistan since 2009:
3 – Pakistan lost each of their last three series in Test cricket – 1-2 against New Zealand, 0-3 against South Africa and 0-2 against Australia. This is the joint-longest series losing streak for Pakistan in this format.
6 – Pakistan is currently on a 6-match losing streak in Test cricket which is their joint-longest losing streak in this format. Pakistan also lost six consecutive Tests in 2016/17 season.
21.65 – Yasir Shah averages 21.65 against Sri Lanka in Test cricket; his best average against any team in this format. The leg-spinner claimed 40 wickets in 5 Test matches against the Lankans.
56.84 – The batting average of Fawad Alam in first-class cricket. He has scored 12222 runs in 165 FC games with help of 34 hundreds and 60 half-centuries. No active player has scored more runs at a better average in FC cricket.
91 – Pakistan has played 91 Test matches thus far since Fawad Alam’s last Test appearance in November 2009. If he gets a chance in the series against Sri Lanka, this streak will be the 7th longest in Test cricket and the 2nd longest behind Younis Ahmed (104) for Pakistan. In fact, Younis Ahmed is the only player to spend more than 10 years between two Test appearances for Pakistan.
822 – Dimuth Karunaratne has scored 822 runs in Test cricket against Pakistan, the most runs he has scored against any team in this format. Karunaratne struck 2 tons and four fifties against Pakistan at an average of 54.80; the only team against which he averaged more than 45. (Min: 5 Tests)
2004 – Last of the nine Test matches hosted by Rawalpindi was way back in 2004. Pakistan lost each of their last three Test matches at this venue – by inns & 99 runs vs Australia in 1998, by 2 wickets vs Sri Lanka in 2000 and by inns & 131 runs vs India in 2004. Pakistan won four of the first six Test matches here while other two matches ended in a draw.
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