Australia establish dominance after Pakistan spurn opportunities on Day 2


The partnership of Marnus Labuschagne and Travis Head, starting confidently at 187/3, guided the team beyond 200 and quickly reached a 50-run mark in just 63 balls. However, Pakistan’s Shaheen Afridi struck the first blow by dismissing Travis Head for 17.

Despite this setback, the hosts capitalized on the aging Kookaburra, accelerating the run rate. Labuschagne, scoring 63, fell on the penultimate delivery before the new ball was available, leaving the score at 250/5. Subsequently, wickets fell rapidly even as Mitchell Marsh counterattacked, contributing a crucial 41 runs to propel Australia to a competitive total of 318 by Lunch.

Aamer Jamal led Pakistan’s bowling attack with three wickets, while the other three pacers managed two each. Pakistan’s openers began the second session resiliently against the challenging new-ball bowling. However, Imam-ul-Haq’s discomfort ended with his dismissal by Nathan Lyon for 10, leaving Abdullah Shafique and Shan Masood at the crease.

The pair complemented each other well amidst formidable bowling spells, accumulating 90 runs together on either side of Tea. But just when stability seemed within Pakistan’s grasp, Pat Cummins emerged as a game-changer. Cummins first removed Shafique for 62 with an exceptional catch and then bowled a superb delivery to dismiss Babar Azam.

Masood fell victim to chaos as well, attempting an unsuccessful slog against Nathan Lyon, before Cummins claimed Salman Agha Ali’s wicket. What was once a steady 124/1 had crumbled to 170/6. However, Mohammad Rizwan (29*) and Aamer Jamaal (2*) prevented further setbacks, guiding Pakistan to end the day at 194/6, trailing by 124 runs.


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