Saud Shakeel scripted history on Tuesday with a brilliant knock against hosts Sri Lanka in the ongoing first Test in Galle.
The Pakistan batter smashed a double century when his team needed it most and helped his side to put up a formidable score of 461 in first innings. Meanwhile, Shakeel also became the first Pakistan batter to score a Test double century in the island nation as he remained unbeaten on 208.
Pakistan were half down from 101 before the southpaw fought hard and helped Pakistan cross the 450-run mark in reply to Sri Lanka’s 312. He also became the eighth batter to hit a double century on Sri Lanka soil after Sachin Tendulkar, Joe Root, Chris Gayle, Stephen Flemming, Mushfiqur Rahim, Virender Sehwag and Brian Lara.
Shakeel’s gritty knock was laced with 19 boundaries as he faced 361 balls and put Pakistan on the top after first innings.
He was dropped twice, on his individual score of 93 and 139.
Shakeel meanwhile, also shared a crucial 177-run partnership alongside Agha Salman, who scored 83 runs to give able support to Shakeel.
The sixth-wicket pair put on a record for Pakistan in tests against Sri Lanka, improving on the 173-run partnership between Sarfaraz Ahmed and Asad Shafiq at Dubai in 2017.
The proceedings started late on Tuesday due to rain, which affected play on the previous two days, prompting officials to re-adjust the session timings.
Notably, Shakeel made his Test debut in December 2022 and in just six matches he has a decent average of 98.5.
Sri Lanka, who managed 312 batting first, bowled out the tourists in the final session of the third day after a frustrating ninth-wicket stand of 94 between Shakeel and Naseem Shah, who scored six off 78 balls.
Earlier, the visitors went past the hosts’ first-innings total just before lunch.
Sri Lanka off-spinner Ramesh Mendis scalped five wickets however, the tourists managed to take a 149-run lead after the first innings to put pressure on the home side.