Babar and Rizwan dig deep as Pakistan pull off incredible draw with Australia

By Sports Desk March 16, 2022

Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan produced incredible batting displays as Pakistan hung on to claim a famous draw in the second Test with Australia in Karachi.

Pakistan skipper Babar's century on Tuesday set up a thrilling conclusion at the National Stadium and the contest was in the balance right until the end.

Babar eventually fell four runs short of a double century, while Rizwan was unbeaten on 104 to help Pakistan survive a record 172 overs in the fourth innings.

The hosts are nine Tests unbeaten against Australia at this venue and, having also played out a draw in Rawalpindi, it is now all to play for in the third and final Test in Lahore.

Pakistan started day five on 192-2 in their second innings, leaving them needing 314 runs to pull off a record chase, and hopes were high when Babar resumed play.

Babar and Abdullah Shafique crossed 200 runs, marking just the fourth time a third-wicket double century partnership had been notched in the fourth innings of a Test.

Australia wrestled back some control when Pat Cummins removed Shafique for 96 just before lunch, with Steve Smith redeeming himself for an earlier drop.

Fawad Alam (nine) succumbed to Cummins, but Babar continued to add runs and looked set for a deserved double ton.

However, he was eventually dismissed for 196 by Nathan Lyon, who then removed Faheem Ashram for a duck to keep things finely poised.

Having fended off Australia for so long, Pakistan then lost Sajid Khan (nine) and were 414-7 with eight overs remaining.

Rizwan looked to be next to go, only for Usman Khawaja to spill the chance, and from there the right-handed batsman brought up his hundred in the penultimate over.

Unable to take the final three wickets, Australia were left to rue what might have been as Pakistan reached 443-7 – 63 runs short of victory – to claim a famous draw. 

 

Babar inspires Pakistan fightback

Babar had gone over two years without a Test century prior to reaching three figures on Tuesday and went on to add another 94 runs on the final day in an inspiring display.

Flanked by supporting roles from Rizwan and Shafique, Babar, whose innings lasted 425 balls, batted for more than 10 hours in the end, though he would have loved to have reached a double century.

Lyon's best efforts not enough

All of Pakistan's hard work was nearly undone thanks to a late flurry of wickets for Lyon, who ended with figures of 4-112.

Removing Babar was a key moment in a match that proved gripping from the start, in stark contrast to a mundane first Test, and sets up a gripping finale next week.

Related items

  • Van Nistelrooy proud after coaching in front of former boss Ferguson Van Nistelrooy proud after coaching in front of former boss Ferguson

    Ruud van Nistelrooy was "proud" to be able to coach in front of his former Manchester United boss, Alex Ferguson, during PSV's Champions League play-off first leg against Rangers.

    Ferguson was in attendance at Ibrox as the teams played out a 2-2 draw on Tuesday.

    Antonio Colak equalised after Ibrahim Sangare's opener in the first half before Tom Lawrence gave the Scottish side the lead, though Van Nistelrooy's team had something to take back for the second leg next week after Armando Obispo headed in a leveller 12 minutes from time.

    The former Netherlands striker was appointed as PSV head coach from the start of the season to replace Roger Schmidt, his first senior role in management.

    Van Nistelrooy played 219 games for United in all competitions under Ferguson between 2001 and 2006, scoring 150 goals, and said at his post-match press conference it was a "proud moment" for him to be in the dugout knowing his former manager was watching on.

    "Oh, my goodness no, one per cent, maybe, one per cent," he said when asked if he would like to be half as good a manager as Ferguson. 

    "It was a proud moment for me that he actually watched me coach my team and manage my team and I'm glad as well. I spoke to him just briefly. He's well, he's looking great. He's doing well, his family as well. So it's great to see him.

    "That he sees me down the touchline at Ibrox for me is a proud moment."

    The 46-year-old also explained how much he had learned from Ferguson, who won 13 Premier League titles, five FA Cups, four EFL Cups and two Champions Leagues during his long tenure at Old Trafford before retiring in 2013.

    "The thing is, as a player, you learn an unbelievable amount of things from him," he said. "And when you start to develop yourself as a coach then obviously you look back at moments.

    "'Where were the managers I had? What did they do, and how did they form a team?' And the style of play and managing an individual, and he's such an example in that sense."

    Van Nistelrooy, whose 44 goals in all competitions in the 2002-03 season still stands as a record for a Premier League player in a single campaign, was happy enough with his team's effort in the first leg in Glasgow, and is glad to have home advantage with the scores level ahead of next week's reverse fixture.

    "We know what it is like with a great support behind us," he added. "That was today as well for Rangers. During some spells in the game the crowd lifted the team in such a way that is hard. I mean, you really notice it. There are not many places where you feel it like this.

    "Of course, next week we will have that support. But both teams are very level in quality and with playing styles. It is reduced to one game now with the final at home. We have to prepare and be at our best."

  • Injured spinner Motie will be big miss for Windies - Pooran Injured spinner Motie will be big miss for Windies - Pooran

    West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran has admitted the absence of frontline spinner Gudakesh Motie will be a huge blow for the team ahead of a crucial upcoming One Day International (ODI) series against New Zealand.

    The 27-year-old spinner has not played since the first ODI against India where he fractured his thumb while fielding.  As a result, the player missed the second and third matches and the entire T20 series against India and New Zealand.   

    With the three matches against New Zealand being the West Indies’ last remaining three fixtures in the ICC ODI Super League, and with the prospect to secure automatic qualification for the 2023 ICC World Cup in India on the line, Pooran would love to have all his best players available.  He has, however, expressed confidence that the team can make do with the available players.

    “It’s a blow for us, especially looking at his performances in the Bangladesh series and how well he bowled in that first game against India,” Pooran told members of the media on Tuesday.

    “I thought we were starting to get that chemistry between both him and Akeal (Hosein) they are two of the better spinners in the Caribbean but it is what it is,” he added.

    “We hope he will recover and soon be available to us but having said that Kevin Sinclair is here, Yannic Cariah has gotten picked and we are backing them to deliver 100 percent.”

     

  • 'It won't happen again' - Liverpool striker Nunez apologises after Palace red card 'It won't happen again' - Liverpool striker Nunez apologises after Palace red card

    Darwin Nunez has issued an apology following his red card during Liverpool's 1-1 draw with Crystal Palace at Anfield.

    The Uruguay international, who arrived from Benfica for a reported £64million (€75m), endured a frustrating home debut for the Reds, which culminated in an early bath after a headbutt on Palace defender Joachim Andersen.

    Nunez had registered five shots - none of which were on target - when he reacted after a sustained period of provocation from Andersen just before the hour mark, throwing his head into the face of the centre-half.

    The striker became only the second Liverpool player to be dismissed on his first home Premier League appearance; exactly 12 years after Joe Cole was given his marching orders in a 1-1 draw with Arsenal.

    Nunez has since taken to Twitter to express his remorse over the incident, posting: "I am aware of the ugly attitude I had. I'm here to learn from my mistakes and it won't happen again. Apologies to Liverpool. I'll be back."

    The 23-year-old will now miss Liverpool's mouth-watering showdown with Manchester United at Old Trafford next Monday, as well as back-to-back home games against Bournemouth and Newcastle United.

     

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.