Sarfraz Ahmed frustrated Sri Lanka’s bid to win the second test inside four days by hitting his maiden test half century and steering Pakistan to 330-7 on Saturday, a lead of 107.
The wicketkeeper made an unbeaten 70 off 123 balls with seven fours after he was flown in as replacement for the injured Adnan Akmal.
Ahmed was supported by No. 8 Bilawal Bhatti, who made 32, before rain ended the fourth day 15 overs early.
Pakistan, trailing by 223, was just 22 runs ahead when Rangana Herath got through the defenses of captain Misbah—ul—Haq for 97, putting Pakistan on 245—6.
Ahmed and Bhatti batted through overcast conditions in the last session and added 67 runs to push the test into the last day.
(headline has been corrected for a factual error)