To assist the hosts to increase their overall advantage to 323 runs and increase their prospects of winning the second test against Pakistan on Tuesday, Sri Lanka’s skipper Dimuth Karunaratne battled through agony. When play was suspended due to poor visibility on day three, the hosts were 176-5, with Karunaratne on 27 and Dhananjaya de Silva on 30.

Pakistan took four wickets in the second session after Sri Lanka lost a 147-run lead, but the 59-run partnership between Karunaratne and de Silva gave Sri Lanka a commanding position.

Ramesh Mendis earlier wiped out Pakistan for 231 as Sri Lanka secured a commanding lead with 5-47, his third five-wicket haul in tests. Yasir Shah and Hasan Ali steadfastly batted after resuming on 191-7 to prevent Sri Lanka from making any progress in the opening hour. However, Sri Lanka didn’t take long to finish off Pakistan’s tail with Mendis removing Nauman Ali and Yasir after Prabath Jayasuriya (3-80) removed Hasan.

Yasir was the last man out after facing 97 balls to score 26. After deciding that Karunaratne would only bat if necessary, Sri Lanka sent Niroshan Dickwella and Oshada Fernando to start. The stop-gap plan did not work, as Dickwella was left behind for 15 minutes by Naseem Shah. Yasir was struck with his first delivery to remove Oshada (19), and Babar Azam lost a catch to save Kusal Mendis with his third match-high slip. However, Kusal (15) was unable to take advantage of it, and Karunaratne stepped up to the plate when Angelo Mathews was dismissed for 35.

Naseem sent back the in-form Dinesh Chandimal (21) soon after the tea break reducing Sri Lanka to 117-5 but de Silva and Karunaratne looked largely untroubled. Pakistan pulled off a thrilling 342-run chase in the opening match to grab a 1-0 lead in the two-test series.