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Pakistan earn hard-fought win despite Bravo, Holder heroics

Darren Bravo's century went in vain for West Indies
Darren Bravo's century went in vain for West Indies
©REUTERS / Action Images

Pakistan 579-3 dec. & 123 (Aslam 44) beat
West Indies 357 & 289 (Bravo 116) by 56 runs
First Test, Dubai, day five

Darren Bravo scored a magnificent century, while Jason Holder showed a lot of courage with his 186-ball unbeaten knock as West Indies gave a tough fight to Pakistan on the final day, but eventually succumbed to a 56-run defeat in the first Test in Dubai.

West Indies started the day at 95 for two, needing 251 more runs to win. The start wasn't an ideal one as the visitors lost Marlon Samuels (4) caught behind off Mohammad Amir (3-63) in the first ball of the day.

After a brief 21-run stand with Bravo (116), Jermaine Blackwood (15) was trapped LBW by Mohammad Nawaz (2-32). Pakistan made successful use of a review to get the decision in their favour.

With a boundary in the 54th over, Bravo brought the runs required under 200. West Indies went into lunch at 154 for four.

In the third over of the second session, Bravo completed his second fifty in the game and few overs later, he also brought the 50-run stand with Roston Chase (35).

Just when West Indies started to look confident, Yasir Shah (2-113) castled chase and in the next over West Indies lost Shane Dowrich (0) to Wahab Riaz (1-47). West Indies were 196 for six at that stage.

In an eventful 73rd over bowled by Shah, Bravo smashed two boundaries and also surived a review for caught behind.

Pakistan took the second new ball without any delay but Bravo and Holder (40 not out) took West Indies safely to 232 for six at dinner break with 114 runs needed in the final session.

Both Bravo and Holder played with caution and brought down the target to 84 runs after the first hour of play in the final session. However, Shah turned the game on its head after taking a brilliant return catch to dismiss Bravo.

Devendra Bishoo (3) tried to provide resistance in his 19-ball knock but was soon trapped LBW by Nawaz as West Indies lost their eighth wicket. They needed 70 more runs to win at that stage.

The final two wickets ended in a bizarre manner as both Miguel Cummins (1) and Shannon Gabriel (1) were run out leaving Holder strangled at the one end. Pakistan managed to wrap up West Indies for 289 with 12 overs remaining in the game.

The 56-run win allowed Pakistan to get a 1-0 lead in the series. Azhar Ali bagged the man of the match for his triple century in the first innings.

© Cricket World 2016