Day 3 of 2nd Test Pakistan trail Australia by 248 runs after following on

Sun going down on Pakistan at the Adelaide Oval
©CSA
 

Pakistan trail Australia by 248 runs with 7 wickets remaining at the close of play on day three, after being forced to follow on by Australia.

Match Summary

Australia 589 - 3 dec – (David Warner 335*, Marnus Labuschagne 162; Shaheen Afridi 3-88)

Pakistan 302 (Babar Azam 97, Yasir Shah 113; Mitchell Starc 6-66) and 39-3

At the Close of Play on Day 3 - Pakistan trail Australia by 248 runs with 7 wickets remaining

Scorecard

A battling 97 from Babar Azam and 113 from Yasir Shah (his 1st Test century) was not enough for Pakistan to avoid the follow on against Australia today and having followed on, Pakistan lost three wickets before rain stopped play with Pakistan trailing Australia by 248 runs with 7 wickets remaining - Mitchell Starc 6-66 was the star with the ball for Australia.

Salim Parvez - Comment

Staunch Shah unable to stop Australia

Tail end Pakistan resistance, featuring Yasir Shah’s fighting maiden international hundred and rain has merely delayed the inevitable, as Australia set their sights on second innings defeat in the series, at Adelaide. In the second innings, as luck would have it, the tourists faced with challenging batting conditions and skilful pace bowling by the Australians, are at 39-3 at close of third night at 9.11pm of this day-night Test, with little or no hope of salvaging a draw.

Babar Azam, unbeaten on 43, resumed his innings on the third day, with only tail enders to accompany him. He stood firm and showed how to bat on a true Adelaide wicket, in the process motivating Yasir to hang around. The pair took the score to 156-6 by the first drinks break and had benefited from a softer pink ball on a beautiful batting track and some ordinary Australian fielding and catching.

 

With a bit of luck going his way, Yasir grew with confidence and went on to make it, his day. The seventh wicket stand was worth 105 when Australia finally broke through as Babar fell three short of a well-deserved hundred. The combination of c Paine b Starc was at it again as the left armer came around to the wicket to induce a thick edge from Babar, who had faced 132 balls and 11 delightful hits to the fence. The very next ball, Shaheen Afridi was leg before to leave Pakistan on 194-8. Surely the end was nigh or so we all thought.

After surviving a ‘perfect’ hat-trick ball, Mohammad Abbas settled down to partner Yasir, who soon would bring up his maiden Test fifty off 129 balls. He took his chances against Nathan Lyon’s off-spin and Abbas was happy to defend for the best part of his stay and Pakistan reached 213-8 at the tea break and the second new ball, only seven balls overs away.

As so often, the tail-end resistance was never without near misses and comical moments. The two Pakistan bowlers, with little to show with the ball in the series so far, were prepared to show fight with the bat. They did not miss out on any scoring opportunities and Yasir, continued to play in his merry ways and brought up a maiden Test hundred within an uppish chip over mid-on. The magic moment was followed up with great celebration. The lower order fight has certainly raised plenty of questions regarding the top order Pakistan batting flop on this surface.

It needed a brute of a delivery from Cummins to end the brave 87-run stand for the 9th wicket when he removed Abbas for a Test-best 29. He faced 78 balls. Yasir finally holed out in the deep with 113 (213balls, 13 fours) and Pakistan were dismissed for 302 in 94.4 overs, still 287 runs behind. Bowling with plenty of energy and rhythm, Starc was by far, the pick of the Australian bowlers with figures of 6-66, as 213 runs came from Pakistan’s last four wickets.

Australian pace trio of Starc, Cummins and Hazlewood, had blown away the top order batting by reducing Pakistan to 96-6 at the close of play on day two of the day-night Test. The intensity maintained for the 35 overs, when there was seam movement but no real swing and backed by superb catching, exposed the brittle nature of batsmanship in Pakistan. Four slips and a gully crouching all the way, it was a stern examination for batsmen lacking in confidence in overseas conditions. With a new pink cherry in their hands, they were up for more ‘blood’ in the second innings.

In cool breezy overcast conditions, Tim Paine, opted to enforce the follow-on as Pakistan still trailed by 287 runs, with fifteen minutes to go for a dinner break.  Imam-ul-Haq was trapped leg-before for a duck to Hazlewood and after the break captain Azhar Ali, reached out to an outswing from Starc to depart with yet another failure to his name. As a captain of a struggling side, Azhar has failed to lead by example and would come under increasing pressure to hold on to his place in the side.

Azhar’s dismissal was followed by a rain break which further freshened up the pitch and after resumption Babar, promoted one position to number 4, too edged behind and Pakistan were in deeper trouble at 20-3. More rain later on brought an end to the proceedings and the score had moved to 39-3 with Shan Masood and Asad Shafiq at the crease. Pakistan clearly on the back foot and Australia remain strong favourites to wrap up the game tomorrow.

 

Match Details

Australia - David Warner, Joe Burns, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Matthew Wade, Travis Head, Tim Paine(c)(wk), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood

 

Pakistan - Imam ul-Haq, Shan Masood, Azhar Ali(c), Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan(wk), Yasir Shah, Shaheen Afridi, Muhammad Musa, Mohammad Abbas

 

Start Time: 03:30

Toss: Australia won the toss and decided to bat

Venue: Adelaide Oval, Adelaide

Officials: Richard Illingworth, Michael Gough, Richard Kettleborough, Shawn Craig, Jeffrey Crowe

 

 

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