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09-Oct-2018 14:36:00 GMT
Pak v Aus - 1st Test, Dubai, day 3

Six-wicket Bilal scripts spectacular Australian collapse

Dubai: Debutant Bilal Asif snatched six wickets to spark a spectacular Australian collapse from 142-0 to 202 all out and put Pakistan in firm command of the first Test in Dubai on Tuesday.

The 33-year-old off-spinner overshadowed his more experienced team-mate Yasir Shah by finishing with 6-36 as his efforts, the third best figures for a Pakistani bowler on Test debut, derailed Australia on a pitch which started to assist spinners on the third day.

Despite being jolted by spinner Jon Holland's two key wickets of Mohammad Hafeez (17) and Azhar Ali (four), Pakistan closed the day on 45-3, having an overall lead of 325 with seven second-innings wickets intact to force a win.

Opener Imam-ul-Haq was unbeaten on 23 while nightwatchman Asif was dismissed for nought, unable to guard Azhar from coming to bat in a crucial stage.

Earlier, by lunch Australia were well-placed at 137 without loss with Usman Khawaja (85) and debutant Aaron Finch (62), but the slump followed shortly after as the Baggy Greens lost all 10 wickets for just 60 runs.

Asif, who had previously played three one-day internationals in 2015, came into his own after pacer Mohammad Abbas removed Finch following an opening stand of 142.

In a spell of 22 balls Asif took four wickets as Australia slumped to 180-5 by tea.

Brief scores:
Pakistan 482 (Hafeez 126, Haris 110, Shafiq 80, Siddle 3-58) and 45 for 3 (Holland 2-9) lead Australia 202 (Khawaja 85, Finch 62, Bilal 6-36, Abbas 4-29) by 325 runs

The second session belonged to Asif, who dismissed Khawaja, Shaun Marsh (seven), Travis Head (nought) and Marnus Labuschagne (nought) in the space of 29 runs.

Earlier in the day Finch was more confident as he punched two boundaries and a six off Yasir before sweeping Asif for a boundary to reach his half-century.

Khawaja, the Pakistan-born batsman, improved upon his previous best score in Asia of 26, made against Sri Lanka at Galle in 2011, by reaching his 13th Test half-century.

The second and final Test starts in Abu Dhabi from October 16. Both teams will also play three Twenty20 internationals after Tests.


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