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'Sri Lanka have given us immense happiness by playing in Pakistan' – Azhar Ali
Pakistan News

'Sri Lanka have given us immense happiness by playing in Pakistan' – Azhar Ali

Azhar Ali on Monday said his country owed a huge thank you to Sri Lanka for helping revive Test cricket in Pakistan.

In a video posted by Pakistan Cricket Board, Pakistan's players went to the Sri Lanka dressing room as players were seen shaking hands and greeting each other.

Earlier, Pakistan clinched the two Test series 1-0 following their 263-run win over the islanders at National Stadium, Karachi. The first Test at Rawalpindi was marred by bad weather which had ended in a draw.

"They have given us immense happiness by playing in Pakistan," said Azhar after his team wrapped up Sri Lanka’s innings just 14 minutes after the start of day’s play.

In pursuit of 476, Sri Lanka were knocked over for 212, with teenager Naseem Shah grabbing the attention with his maiden five-wicket haul.

Related: 'Regret not coming for the shorter formats' - Karunaratne feels Pakistan is safe for cricket

Aged 16 years and 307 days, Naseem became the second youngest bowler overall and youngest quick to record a five-wicket haul in Tests.

Left-arm Pakistani spinner Nasim-ul-Ghani was four days younger when he nabbed five wickets against the West Indies at Georgetown in 1958.

Azhar, who played a Test in Pakistan for the first time since making debut in 2010, said the occasion was a memorable one as his side won the series.

"It's a great occasion for happiness for all of us that we won the series. It carried great importance and was very significant because we were playing our first home Test," said Azhar.

‘Security people were like fathers to us’ – Karunaratne

Sri Lankan skipper, Dimuth Karunaratne said his team had felt safe in Pakistan.

"Security was 200 percent," said Karunaratne, who had withdrawn himself from the limited overs squad which played Pakistan in three T20Is and as many ODIs.

"Security people were like fathers to us. They kept talking to us and they were right behind us every time. When we were going out to eat or shopping, they were there."

Karunaratne urged other teams to consider playing in Pakistan, but admitted they would need to be convinced.

"They have seen us playing here and enjoying here. They will have something in their minds and they will decide (for themselves)," he added.