Australia eye whitewash after Pakistan’s dramatic collapse in Sydney Test

SYDNEY  -   Josh Hazlewood achieved brilliant bowling figures of 4-9 to help Australia reduce Pakistan to 68-7 at stumps on the third day of the third Test at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Friday. Mohammad Rizwan (6) and Aamir Jamal (0) will resume the batting on the fourth day with their side leading by 82 runs. After bowling Australia out for 299, Pakistan had a dismal start to their second innings as they lost two wickets with one run on the board.

Debutant Saim Ayub and Babar Azam then knitted a 57- run stand for the third wicket to help Pakistan recover before Nathan Lyon struck to halt their progress. Ayub was playing on 33 when Lyon’s delivery thudded his pad and the umpire gave him out, however, he reviewed the decision to no avail and walked back to the pavilion.

Babar Azam was caught behind off part-timer Travis Head after scoring 23 runs, which opened the floodgates as Pakistan collapsed from 58-3 to 67- 7. Josh Hazlewood led the destruction as he dismissed Saud Shakeel, nightwatchman Sajid Khan and Salman Ali Agha in the same over, minutes before the end of the day’s play.

Prior to that, Aamir Jamal claimed six wickets to help Pakistan book Australia for 299 in the first innings. Aamir Jamal returned with figures of 6-69 to become only the second player from Pakistan to score more than 80 runs and pick six wickets in the same match after legendary Imran Khan achieved this feat in 1983 against arch-rivals India. 

Australia resumed their innings at 289-6 after tea with Mitchell Marsh standing firm at 50. However, the hosts only managed to add 10 runs as Aamir Jamal picked the last four wickets in quick succession to wrap the Australian innings at 299 runs. Marsh was dismissed after playing a patient 54-run knock from 113 balls with the help of six boundaries. Pat Cummins was out lbw in the same over as Marsh, while, Nathan Lyon and Josh Hazlewood fell in the next over. Other than Aamir Jamal, Salman Ali Agha picked two wickets for Pakistan.

Earlier in the day, Australia resumed their innings at 116/2, trailing by a further 197 runs, with Marnus Labuschagne (23) and Steve Smith (6) at the crease. The two batters batted brilliantly in the first session to extend their partnership to 79 runs before Mir Hamza got Smith (38) out with a total of 187 runs on the board. Labuschagne, who was playing at 60 off 147, was bowled by an outstanding delivery in the next over by Salman Ali Agha. Travis Head was just getting settled but he was stopped in his tracks by Aamir Jamal, who got him out lbw to reduce Australia to 205-5.

Mitchell Marsh and Alex Carey (38) then allied and added 84 runs for six wickets before Sajid Khan bowled Carey at the stroke of the tea break. For the unversed, Australia has an unassailable 2-0 lead over Pakistan in the three-match Test series.

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt