Pakistan vs Australia, 2nd Test Day 2: Australia in command
Australia batted themselves into a commanding position, in the 2nd Test, on Day 2 against Pakistan, at the National Stadium, Karachi.
Pakistan vs Australia, 2nd Test, Australia tour of Pakistan
Australia *505/8 (180 ov)
Day Break : Day 2 Australia won the toss and elected to bat
Stumps on day two in Karachi ??— ICC (@ICC) March 13, 2022
Alex Carey misses out on his first Test ton but the visitors pile on the runs. #WTC23 | https://t.co/KbFpFYkYzL pic.twitter.com/CxEzhG8j5w
Match Report - Pakistan spirit still intact
On a National Stadium Karachi wicket that is not entirely lifeless, it will need an extraordinary bowling effort to get a result for either Australia or Pakistan. The six sessions thus far with 180 overs bowled and the tourists having put up a total of 505-8, a result looks unlikely but not impossible. Fair enough Australia do not wish to bat second time around but missed the trick by not having a go at Pakistan’s top order.
The highlight of the opening day of Test was Usman Khawaja, who in his press conference at the close of play, revealed his family roots in Nazimabad, Karachi. He has shown how vital his contribution has been on his trip back ‘home’, after missing a hundred at Rawalpindi. Today, the left-handed would resume his innings on 127 in front of Sunday crowd that was eagerly looking forward to the contest between the two teams kicking off at 10am local time. The night watchman Nathan Lyon swung the bat to good effect and his contribution of 38 in a 54-run stand with Khawaja was exactly what the opposition didn’t need. Australia would add 81 runs in the 27 overs bowled before lunch to reach a commanding 332-4. Lot of hard work ahead for Pakistan bowlers who with the return of Hasan Ali and Faheem Ashraf, represent a balanced Test match attack.
A hint of reverse swing for Pakistan bowlers in the post lunch session, certainly stemmed the run rate. Both Shaheen Afridi and Hasan posed threat and Khawaja had to make a desperate dive to avoid a run out when on 157. The dismissal of Travis Head was a bonus for the home side for he with his quirky and pro-active approach could see the game run away from Pakistan. He was leg-before to Sajid Khan, who had been pushing the ball at a slightly faster pace than yesterday. He would send back Khawaja with a beauty that straightened after pitching to peg back Australia who were now 360-6. The Aussie opener’s marathon knock that lasted close to 9 hours was an innings of substance and one he would remember for the rest of his life. He had faced 369 balls and hit 15 fours and a six whilst giving very little away and winning the hearts of the crowd present and all around the world.
In the final session which Australia started with 407-7 the talk of the pitch breaking a bit had started to creep into the conversations. The tourists were expected to motor on with Alex Carey at the crease but it didn’t really materlaize. The lull in the proceedings was not appreciated by many but it was a ploy to keep Pakistanis in the field for much longer. Nauman Ali missed a return catch offered by Carey on 42 and the left-handed wicket-keeper batsman got to his second Test match fifty with a reverse sweep for a single in the fine leg region.
Australia surely needed to up the tempo and think of putting Pakistan under scoreboard pressure. With the game going nowhere, Babar Azam took the third new ball with the scoreboard showing 447-7 after 163 overs. Shaheen, the spearhead of the home side’s pace attack, was seen to be trying ‘too hard’ on this National Stadium wicket. He was still wicket-less and now helped Carey-Starc stand to frustrate his side, with costly overs with the fresh ball.
A maiden Test hundred was there for the taking when Carey looking to keep the strike played across the line to be bowled by the part-time spin of Babar. The 98-run 8th wicket stand was finally broken but declaration still didn’t arrive.
Australia: Fall of wickets: 1-82 (David Warner - 17.6 ov), 2-91 (Marnus Labuschagne - 20.6 ov), 3-250 (Steven Smith - 88.5 ov), 4-304 (Nathan Lyon - 105.2 ov), 5-347 (Travis Head - 120.2 ov), 6-360 (Usman Khawaja - 130.2 ov), 7-405 (Cameron Green - 145.3 ov), 8-503 (Alex Carey - 177.6 ov)
Pakistan - Abdullah Shafique, Imam ul-Haq, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam(c), Fawad Alam, Mohammad Rizwan(wk), Faheem Ashraf, Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan, Hassan Ali, Shaheen Afridi
Australia - David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steven Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey(wk), Pat Cummins(c), Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Swepson
Start Time: 05:00
Toss: Australia won the toss and decided to bat
Venue: National Stadium, Karachi
Officials: Ahsan Raza, Aleem Dar, Rashid Riaz, Asif Yaqoob, Ranjan Madugalle
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