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                                        Afridi helps Pakistan draw series

All-rounder Shahid Afridi and fast bowler Mohammed Sami guided Pakistan to a comfortable 23 runs win over Sri Lanka in the second T20 International played at Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium, Sooriyawewa, on Sunday. With this win the tourists levelled the two-match series to retain their fifth place in the ICC T20 rankings.Sri Lanka is currently ranked at number three. Chasing an easy target of 123, Sri Lankans succumbed to a paltry 99 inside 19.2 overs. Mohammed Sami claimed 3 for 16 in his three overs and Yasir Arafat justified his selection over Umar Gul with figures of 3 for 18. Former Pakistan skipper, Shahid Afridi, who became the first cricketer to play 50 T20 internationals on Sunday, did his best to pull Pakistan out of trouble with a 33-ball unbeaten 52. The strong right-hander hit five fours and a massive six over the bowlers head.Sri Lankan bowlers excelled to restrict Pakistan for 122 for six in 20 overs but the batsmen failed to live up to expectations. Afridi was ably supported by Shoaib Malik, who compiled 27 in 26 balls. Malik and Afridi were associated in a 68 runs stand for the fifth wicket in 50 balls. Nuwan Kulasekara gave yet another superb start with a wicket for five runs in his first spell of two overs. With Afridi going great guns, Pakistan plundered 32 runs between 15th and 17th overs, but Kulasekara took control of the situation again to restrict them for 18 runs in the last three overs. He conceded only 13 runs in his 4 overs and claimed two wickets.Angelo Mathews was promoted to lead Sri Lanka for the first time but ended up with a result he would like to forget. Sri Lanka rested two of their most seasoned players, Mahela Jayawardene and fast bowler Lasith Malinga to make room for Chamara Kapugedara and Isuru Udana. However, Kapugedara couldn't justify the call made by the selectors. He was bowled for 19 by Afridi the very next ball after hitting the bowler for a six.
 
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