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AFP
November 22, 2019

Australia skittle Pakistan to seize control at Gabba

Sports

AFP
November 22, 2019

BRISBANE: Australia seized the advantage on the opening day of the first Test when they bowled Pakistan out for 240 just before stumps at the Gabba in Brisbane on Thursday.

After the visitors resisted stubbornly in the first session, reaching 57 for no wicket at lunch, pace trio Mitchell Starc (4-52), Josh Hazlewood (2-46) and Pat Cummins (3-60) tore through the Pakistan batting order to put the hosts in charge at the close of play.

Australia seized the initiative after lunch when they took five wickets for just 19 runs, reducing Pakistan from 75 for none to 94 for five. Pakistan were rescued from complete disaster by Asad Shafiq who played a lone hand, scoring 76 well-made runs.

Shafiq came to the crease with his side 75 for two, then saw Haris Sohail (1) and Baba Azar (1) fall for the addition of only two runs. But good partnerships of 49 between Shafiq and Mohammed Rizwan, who made 37, and then 84 with Yasir Shah (26) enabled the visitors to achieve a respectable score.

“I knew that if we could build a good partnership it could help the team,” Shafiq said. “We didn’t reach the total we wanted but still we got a respectable total and with the bowling unit we’ve got, we will put up a very good fight.”

Rizwan, who was counter-attacking fearlessly, fell controversially with Cummins appearing to have just overstepped the mark, only for TV umpire Michael Gough to give the benefit of the doubt to the bowler.

Yasir batted bravely but when the Australians took the second new ball, Pakistan’s resistance was all but over.

The visitors had frustrated the Australian pace attack in the first session, going into lunch at 57-0 with openers Azhar Ali and Shan Masood unbeaten on 28 and 21 respectively.

The pair began to open up after the break with some sparkling attacking shots, but Hazlewood and Cummins at last found their length and began to turn the screws.

The pressure began to tell and with the score on 75 Masood waved at a Cummins delivery outside off stump and edged to Steve Smith at second slip. Azhar went the next ball when he edged Hazlewood to Joe Burns at first slip, before Sohail and Azam both fell to poor shots.

When Nathan Lyon had Iftikhar Ahmed caught at bat-pad for seven, Pakistan were reeling at 94 for five before Shafiq and Rizwan steadied the ship in the half-hour before tea. Pakistan earlier won the toss and chose to bat on a hot and humid morning in Brisbane.

Pakistan won toss

Pakistan 1st Innings

Shan Masood c Smith b Cummins 27

*Azhar Ali c Burns b Hazlewood 39

Haris Sohail c Paine b Starc 1

Asad Shafiq b Cummins 76

Babar Azam c Burns b Hazlewood 1

Iftikhar Ahmed c Labuschagne b Lyon 7

†Mohammad Rizwan c Paine b Cummins 37

Yasir Shah b Starc 26

Shaheen Afridi c Paine b Starc 0

Naseem Shah c & b Starc 7

Imran Khan not out 5

Extras (b 4, lb 8, nb 1, w 1) 14

Total (all out; 86.2 overs) 240

Fall: 1-75, 2-75, 3-77, 4-78, 5-94, 6-143, 7-227, 8-227, 9-227, 10-240

Bowling: Starc 18.2-52-4 (1 w); Hazlewood 20-6-46-2 (1 nb); Cummins 22-7-60-3; Lyon 17-3-40-1; Labuschagne 8-0-24-0; Smith 1-0-6-0

Australia: Joe Burns, David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Matthew Wade, *†Tim Paine, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood

Umpires: Richard Illingworth and Richard Kettleborough (England). TV umpire: Michael Gough (England). Match referee: Jeff Crowe (New Zealand)

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