Sri Lanka are in the driving seat in the ongoing second and final Test against Pakistan as they have set a record target of 508 before restricting the tourists to 89/1, keeping their hopes of a series-levelling victory alive.

The hosts declared their second innings on 360/8, thanks to the batting brilliance of Dhananjaya de Silva, who smashed 109 to mark his ninth Test ton, helping the hosts take a solid grip on the contest.

Captain Dimuth Karunaratne (61), who was struggling with lower back pain, smashed a remarkable 61 and formed a crucial 126-run stand with De Silva after the Islanders resumed Day 4 on 176/5.

In their massive chase, Pakistan started with positive intent as both Abdullah Shafique and Imam-ul-Haq started founding the boundaries. The pair added 42 runs before a stunning catch from Dunith Wellalage removed the in-form Shafique for 16.

The dismissal, however, couldn’t stop Pakistan from maintaining a healthy run rate, thanks to attacking strokes from Imam and skipper Babar Azam. The two batters ensured the visitors didn’t sustain any damage as they batted cautiously into tea.

Just as the game was reaching the final hour of action, the home team was robbed of precious time as only six overs could be played in the final session before bad light stopped play. Opener Imam was batting on 46 while Babar was at 26 at stumps with Pakistan 419 runs behind the target.

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