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Steven Smith-led Side Pulverizes Pakistan in 2nd Test to Seal Series

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Steven Smith-led Side Pulverizes Pakistan in 2nd Test to Seal Series

December 30
14:57 2016

capNew Delhi, Friday, December 30 – Inconsistency in performance once again made Pakistan lose another Test despite a good start. The touring team declared first innings at 443 runs, losing nine wickets. Here is to mention that Misbah-ul-Haq, Babar Azam, Sami Aslam, Azhar Ali, Younis Khan, Sohail Khan, Sarfraz Ahmed Mohammad Amir, Asad Shafiq, Wahab Riaz and Yasir Shah made Pakistan Playing XI look strong. It wasn’t that they weren’t aware about the potential housed by Australia, who were invited to bowl first after Pakistan won the toss in the second Test.

The crowd was good in attendance at Melbourne Cricket Ground in Melbourne to cheer mostly for the home squad led by Steven Smith. Those picked to do well against the rivals were Usman Khawaja, Matt Renshaw, David Warner, Peter Handscomb, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, Nic Maddinson, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood and Jackson Bird. When Pakistan scored over 400 runs thanks to the blitz by Azhar Ali, who scored 205 runs (4 x 20) facing 364 deliveries, it seemed that the team will prove that it was a good toss to win. But story was completely changed due to a robust start by Australian opener David Warner who showcased his natural batting skills by scoring 144 runs in just 143 balls (4 x 17 and 6 x 1) even when opening batsman Matt Renshaw was dismissed early.

Steven Smith also batted well, impressively scoring 165 runs, together with 13 fours and a six. Usman Khawaja fell three runs short to get a ton. After 142 overs, Australia declared innings at 624 runs for the loss of eight wickets. And this proved sufficient for the home squad. If truth be told it was poor start and end for Pakistan. Sami Aslam was dismissed by Hazlewood at 2 runs, Babar Azam was sent back to the pavilion by Starc at 3 runs. Younis Khan was dismissed next, succumbing to Lyon post scoring 24 runs, which included a couple of fours.  Misbah-ul-Haq was out by Lyon without opening his account. Asad Shafiq Ahmed also lost his wicket to the same bowler at a score of 16 (4 x 1). Azhar Ali was lbw by Hazlewood at 43 runs. He faced 112 balls to get this total, making sure to spend some time on the crease and bravely face balls bowled in different line and length by Australian bowlers.

Mohammad Amir could not read a delivery by Bird and departed at 11 runs (4 x 1). Sarfraz Ahmed displayed some classy batting, pocketing 43 runs off 62 balls, with four 4s, but soon Starc made sure to dismiss him before the batsman would have gone for totalling some more runs. Both Wahab Riaz and Yasir Shah were out for a naught.  Sohail Khan was not out at 10 runs, which comprised two fours.  Short innings by most of the Pakistan players in second innings made them suffer batting collapse. The tourists could only score 163 runs this time.  Smith went only with four bowlers, who did their bit by letting opponents lose wickets early. Starc dismissed four batsmen, Lyon three, Hazlewood two and Bird one when Pakistan batted for second time, hoping to hoard runs that could be challenging for the hosts when they arrive on the crease to chase the target. Nonetheless that did not happen. Australia won by an innings and 18 runs, sealing series as well. Smith was chosen Player of the Match.

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