Colombo, Jun 19: Angelo Mathews hammered a brisk 80 not out as Sri Lanka posted a thrilling two-wicket victory over Pakistan in the fifth and final one-day international in Colombo on Monday night to clinch the series 3-1.
[Scorecard: Fifth ODI]
Mathews smashed two sixes and four boundaries in his 76-ball knock to help his team achieve a 248-run target with two balls to spare in the day-night match.
One game was abandoned due to rain. Sri Lanka needed 15 runs to win in the last over bowled by paceman Mohammad Sami before Mathews completed the win with a four.
Dinesh Chandimal was the other main scorer for Sri Lanka with 54. Paceman Sohail Tanvir bagged three wickets and leg-spinner Shahid Afridi two to reduce Sri Lanka to 138-6 before Mathews received valuable support from Jeevan Mendis (19) and Nuwan Kulasekara (10 not out) to steer his team home.
"I haven't had the opportunity to bat since the first game, but I was ready. I am glad I did it today in front of an amazing crowd," said Mathews, who was named Man-of-the-match. Thisara Perera was Man-of-the-series.
"It was a great game," said Mahela Jayawardene. "The whole series was fantastic. We had to dig deep at times, and today was no different. Big call to play Mendis today. Bowled beautifully, fielded magnificently, we knew he could bat too. We just need to focus on little things like we did in the one-dayers."
Afridi removed well-set Kumar Sangakkara (40) and skipper Mahela Jayawardene off successive balls to put pressure on Sri Lanka. Sangakkara, who was dropped on 25 by wicket-keeper Sarfraz Ahmed off Sami, failed to capitalise on the chance as he could add 15 more runs.
Ahmed made amends when he smartly stumped Sangakkara off Afridi, who then held a return catch off his next ball to dismiss Jayawardene. "It was a great game. The whole series was fantastic. We had to dig deep at times and today was no different," said Jayawardene.