Shan Masood delighted after scoring ?special? century


KARACHI: Pakistan’s left-handed opener Shan Masood, who hit a solid 135 against Sri Lanka on the third day of the second Test, said that Pakistan were in commanding position and they should now capitalise on the advantage to set a tough target for the opposition.

“We are in a commanding position and we should take benefit of it to set a tough target. If we give a 450- to 500-run target to Sri Lanka then there will be a lot of pressure on the visitors,” Shan said in a news conference at the end of the third day’s play of the second Test between Pakistan and Sri Lanka here at the National Stadium.

As compared to the other centuries he scored on foreign soil, Shan termed his century against Sri Lanka a ‘special one’.

“It was definitely more special as I scored it in front of the home crowd,” Shan said.

“And another important thing is that collectively as a nation, it’s a big achievement that Test cricket has returned to Pakistan after a decade,” he said.

Shan said that on Saturday bounce was a bit low but the ball was coming onto the bat very quickly. However, he added that there were still cracks on the wicket and it was not easy to cope with the deliveries that landed in the right areas.

He said in the start, the pressure was definitely there as they had conceded a lead.

“When you play at home pressure is always there as you cannot afford losing a series on your home soil,” the opener said.

About the first-wicket record stand, Shan said that Asad Shafiq had told them about that.

“Our target was to reach to a 300-run partnership. Asad Shafiq had told us in the dressing room about the record stand but it could not be done unfortunately. But the major thing is your contribution and through our contribution we have put Pakistan in a strong position,” he said.

Shan said that he had a good understanding with Abid.

“We had good understanding and it was reflected in our running between the wicket. It puts pressure on the opponents when you rotate the strike,” he said.

Shan was not happy with the stroke he played which also cost him his wicket.

“It was a half-hearted pull. I am not unhappy with the pull but with my execution which was not right,” Shan said.

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