Younus Seizes Control Of First Test
Pakistan 249 & 419-9d (Younus 200no) v
Zimbabwe 327 & 13-1
First Test, Harare, day four
A Younus Khan double-hundred saw Pakistan seize the initiative in the first Test on the fourth day in Harare. They declared their second innings closed at 419 for nine; immediately after Younus had reached the milestone.
Saeed Ajmal then struck in the 7.3 overs that Zimbabwe faced in their second innings. He had Tino Mawoyo LBW to the final ball of the day as the hosts suffered a setback in their run chase of 342.
Mawoyo’s dismissal capped what had been a pretty poor last session for Zimbabwe. They took the ninth Pakistani wicket with the score on 331 and the lead on a more manageable 253, but the unbroken tenth-wicket stand of 88 between Rahat Ali and Younus just about snuffed out any lingering hopes they have of winning this Test match after such a promising first three days.
Rahat hit 35 off only 40 balls and smashed three sixes as Zimbabwe’s attack tired. They had earlier been made to suffer by Adnan Akmal, who added 118 with Younus to set the tone for the day’s proceedings.
The pair came together after Tendai Chatara had removed Asad Shafiq for the addition of a solitary run to their overnight score, but by the time they were separated by a run-out, Pakistan were unquestionably ahead in the contest.
Akmal’s 64 was shown to be even more crucial as Prosper Utseya looked like mopping up the tail. He had Abdur Rehman, Saeed Ajmal and Junaid Khan dismissed in relatively quick succession before Rahat and Younus’ last stand.
Younus was, of course, without doubt the star of the day and drew on all of his experience to steer Pakistan’s fragile batting line-up towards a total that looks like being a winning one. He took his time, bringing up three figures off 221 balls and reaching 150 off 351 before accelerating for the final part of his innings to end up on 200 off 404 deliveries.
© Cricket World 2013