Misbah’s Century Leads The Way
Pakistan’s 2nd Test kicked off against England in Dubai on Thursday 22nd October. The very important toss was won by Misbah and as expected selected to bat first on an expected flat batting wicket. Fortunately Yasir Shah is fit again and included in the final eleven.
Again disappointingly the teams played to a near empty stadium.
The track proved to offer a little more assistance to the seamers than the Abu Dhabi pitch.
Openers Mohammad Hafeez and Shan Masood made a good started with a partnership of 51 before a soft dismissal for Hafeez, caught at short leg by Bairstow off Moeen Ali’s spin bowling.
Bairstow was in the action again soon after, as Shoaib Malik hit him in the chest at short leg, the ball popped up and finally Bairstow caught it, with superquick reflexes. Score 58/2.
After a dismal 1st Test for Shan Masood, he showed more confidence in Dubai, making a half century.
First ball after lunch Shan Masood (54 runs) edged Anderson to the keeper, Shan called for a review but was unsuccessful, 85/3.
This was a worrying situation for the temperamental Pakistan batting line up. However veterans Younis Khan and Misbah put on a 4th wicket partnership of 93 before Younis on 56 runs, edged one down the leg side to Butler, 178/4.
Misbah and Asad Shafiq went on to score an unbeaten partnership of 104 runs at the close, finishing on 282/4. Misbah played very cautiously against the seamers however capitalised on the spinners.
41 year old Misbah was in a rush to get his century, as in the last over he hit Moeen Ali for 15 runs including two 6s to reach 102 not out (8 fours, 5 sixes). Misbah became the oldest player to get Test century since Australian Bobby Simpson in 1978.
In summary after a shaky start I feel Pakistan will be content with the end result of the day.
This is a very similar situation to the 1st Test when Pakistan finished on 286/4 on the 1st day.
Today the honours belonged to Captain Misbah ul Haq.