Usman Khawaja strengthened his rising fame as Australia’s most dependable batter as Steve Smith’s century drought continued on day one of many third Take a look at in opposition to Pakistan in Lahore.

Khawaja continued his latest purple patch to anchor Australia’s first innings of the collection decider however fell in need of a century when he was dismissed through a spectacular catch from Pakistani captain Babar Azam on 91.

His innings was the bedrock of Australia’s day one complete of 5-232.

Smith additionally regarded on observe for triple figures however was dismissed quickly after the tea break for 59. In a uncommon sight in worldwide cricket, Smith walked on an lbw dismissal earlier than umpire Ahsan Raza had even had the prospect to level skyward to ship him on his method.

The pair placed on a third-wicket partnership of 138 runs after Australia had slumped to 2-Eight within the third over when David Warner (seven) and Marnus Labuschagne (0) fell inside the area of three balls to left-arm paceman Shaheen Afridi.

Khawaja (31) and Smith (28) guided Australia to 2-70 at lunch however they had been fortunate to outlive till the break.

Khawaja was on 12 when he edged spinner Nauman Ali to first slip – just for the ball to sneak below the fingertips of Azam and thru his legs.

Then subsequent ball, Nauman dropped a pointy caught and bowled alternative when Smith was on 19 and the scoreboard learn 2-44.The missed possibilities proved expensive, with Khawaja and Smith settling after that to information Australia safely to lunch after which via the following session earlier than Smith fell quickly after tea.

Smith has now scored only one century in his previous 27 Take a look at innings together with his most up-to-date triple-figure rating 14 innings in the past, his hundred in opposition to India on the SCG at the beginning of 2021.

The one longer spell on his resume with out a ton was the primary 22 innings of his profession when he was primarily chosen as a leg-spinner.

Smith was trapped plumb by an in-swinger from younger paceman Naseem Shah.

Khawaja continued on in the direction of what regarded like one other century after his monumental 160 within the second Take a look at at Karachi.

Nevertheless, he nicked Sajid Khan 9 runs in need of his ton and Azam snared an excellent one-handed catch diving away to his proper, simply above the bottom.

Travis Head departed for 26, additionally falling sufferer to Naseem Shah, nicking off to Mohammed Rizwan to depart Australia 5-206.

Alex Carey (Eight not out) and Cameron Inexperienced (20 not out) safely negotiated the ultimate overs of the day in opposition to the second new ball to assist Australia get again into the struggle.

Khawaja has amassed 392 runs for the collection, essentially the most by any participant, at 130.67, and has handed 50 in 5 of his eight innings since his recall for the fourth Take a look at of the Ashes collection on the SCG.

Earlier, Australia received the toss and elected to bat on what was initially anticipated to be a docile pitch.

However it was carnage early as each Warner and Labuschagne fell sufferer to a chatty Afridi.

Warner was trapped lbw to a ball that will have gone on to hit leg stump.

And two balls later, Labuschagne was despatched packing when he edged via to the wicketkeeper.

Smith was within the zone as he set about launching the rescue mission, together with his steely focus solely damaged when he expressed displeasure on the roving ‘buggy cam’ distracting him.

Khawaja opened up approaching lunch by whacking Ali for six.

Australia named the identical XI from the drawn second Take a look at, however former Take a look at wicketkeeper Brad Haddin was shocked the guests weren’t extra aggressive on the choice entrance.

Haddin mentioned he would have included Ashton Agar within the XI to type a three-pronged spin assault alongside Nathan Lyon and Mitchell Swepson.

“I’d have left Travis Head out for instance … and would have performed Ashton Agar,” Haddin advised Fox Sports activities.

“Runs haven’t been an issue and wickets have been a premium, so … we might have moved (Alex) Carey up the order, and Agar’s there able to go.”

Pakistan made one change, omitting all-rounder Faheem Ashraf for 19-year-old paceman Naseem Shah.

By 24H

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.