RAWALPINDI: Rain continues to disrupt the revival of test cricket in Pakistan after 10 years as the fourth day’s play of the first test between Pakistan and Sri Lanka has been called off without a ball being bowled.
Umpires called off the day’s play at 1200 local time (0700 GMT) under heavy overcast conditions with plenty of water on the covers and soggy outfield at the Pindi Cricket Stadium.
Both teams stayed in their hotel and only match officials came to the ground on Saturday to witness the gloomy weather conditions.
The ground staff briefly tried to clear the water off covers with wipers and also used super sopper, but thick cloud covers forced the umpires to call off the day’s play as there’s a chance of more rain in this northern city — at least on Saturday.
Sri Lanka, which last played a test in Pakistan in 2009, is 282-6 in its first innings with Dhananjaya de Silva unbeaten on 87 and Dilruwan Perera not out on 6.
So far only 91.5 overs of play has been possible in the first test of the two-match series which is part of ICC’s World Test Championship.
Pakistan is yet to get its first WTC Championship points after two heavy defeats in Australia. Sri Lanka has 60 points after it drew the home series against New Zealand 1-1.
The wet weather has badly affected the first ever test match in Pakistan for over a decade. For cricket-starved fans of Rawalpindi it has been a disappointing four days as the city has last hosted a test match in 2004 when India beat Pakistan by an innings margin.
Sri Lanka was the last team to play a test match in Pakistan, when terrorists attacked the touring team’s bus in Lahore in March 2009. The ambush killed eight people and left several Sri Lankan players and officials injured.
In the interim, Pakistan has played its home test matches on neutral territory, mostly in the United Arab Emirates.