Wicket! Naseem c & b Starc 7 (Pakistan 240 all out) & Stumps
The end arrives, with Naseem sending a leading edge back to Starc to make it four wickets for the innings. That is stumps. Australia, and they will be thankful for this, won’t be asked to face an over or two before the day’s end.
86th over: Pakistan 240-9 (Imran Khan 5, Naseem Shah 7)
These two tailenders are looking more assured by the minute. Imran has little difficulty keeping Cummins at arm’s length until, last ball of the over, he reaches at a wide one outside off-stump and picks out Labuschagne, only to survive as the the third slip fumbles the sharp chance.
85th over: Pakistan 240-9 (Imran Khan 5, Naseem Shah 7)
Starc has eyes only for the three uprights but Naseem is up to the challenge. The leftie changes tack and drops one in short, so short in fact that it’s called a wide. Naseem then keeps at bay the fastest delivery of the day – upwards of 146kph – before ending the over with a ripper of an on-drive that finds the rope.
84th over: Pakistan 233-9 (Imran Khan 5, Naseem Shah 1)
Naseem tries to get off the mark in Test cricket by hoicking Cummins out of the ground (amazingly, this doesn’t work) but he eventually troubles the scorer with a defensive mis-hit past point. Imran then swings hard and gets enough on it to clear the slip cordon for a boundary.
83rd over: Pakistan 228-9 (Imran Khan 1, Naseem Shah 0)
Starc mixes his length to Imran, who shows greater resolve than technique to keep the fast bowler at bay. No runs, no wicket.
82nd over: Pakistan 228-9 (Imran Khan 1, Naseem Shah 0)
If Australia can take the remaining Pakistan wicket next over, they’ll have about 15 minutes to bat before stumps. Question is: do they really want that?
Wicket! Asad b Cummins 76 (Pakistan 227-9)
Fast, hostile bowling from Cummins is rewarded as Asad plays around a straight one and is bowled through the gate, ending a very good innings. The end for Pakistan is nigh.
Wicket! Shaheen c Paine b Starc 0 (Pakistan 227-8)
Shaheen comes and goes, edging his first ball into Paine’s gloves. The initial decision is not out, but Australia review the decision and Shaheen does indeed feather an edge.
The hat-trick ball, to be faced by none other than the 16-year-old debutant Naseem Shah, is survived by no thanks to what can only be described as comedy footwork by the teenager. What an over!
Wicket! Yasir b Starc 26 (Pakistan 227-7)
An absolute ripsnorter of a yorker from Starc, whose tracer bullet swings into Yasir and breaks his stump. Not many batsmen would have survived that one.
81st over: Pakistan 227-6 (Asad Shafiq 76, Yasir Shah 26)
Starc returns to the attack. The new ball is due but not yet taken. That scenario lasts just one delivery, Starc’s loosener, before the new cherry is taken. Starc’s first effort with the shiny new nut beats Yasir’s outside edge before trapping him in front. The appeal goes up but the ball looks clearly to have pitched outside leg-stump. No review.
80th over: Pakistan 226-6 (Asad Shafiq 75, Yasir Shah 26)
Smith is tossed the ball in the last over before the new ball is due. He presents a rank full-toss to Asad, who helps himself a boundary past long-on. Last ball, Smith beats Yasir’s bat with a beauty.
79th over: Pakistan 220-6 (Asad Shafiq 70, Yasir Shah 25)
Asad picks up a single courtesy of a solidly struck sweep off Labuschagne, a shot which frankly deserved more than one run, and it’s the same shot, same result for Yasir later in the over. New ball due in an over.
78th over: Pakistan 216-6 (Asad Shafiq 68, Yasir Shah 23)
Yasir advances down the pitch and tries to heave Lyon out of the ground, but succeeds only in lofting his mistimed shot to the vacant mid-on area. No such issues for Asad, who next ball connect with his paddle sweep for another boundary.
77th over: Pakistan 209-6 (Asad Shafiq 62, Yasir Shah 22)
It’s been all singles since tea but Asad breaks the shackles, punching Labuschagne wide of extra cover for four.
76th over: Pakistan 204-6 (Asad Shafiq 57, Yasir Shah 22)
Three singles are scored off Lyon’s latest over, and I believe Australia are yet to bowl a maiden this session.
75th over: Pakistan 201-6 (Asad Shafiq 55, Yasir Shah 21)
Pakistan bring up their 200, which an hour or so ago looked unlikely. Labuschagne concedes three runs with his fast leg-breaks, both in terms of speed of delivery and speed of over.
74th over: Pakistan 198-6 (Asad Shafiq 52, Yasir Shah 21)
A single off Lyon’s over, which must be a contender for the quickest to be bowled. Ever.
73rd over: Pakistan 197-6 (Asad Shafiq 51, Yasir Shah 21)
A couple of nurdled singles off Labuschagne’s over. It seems both batsmen and bowlers are shutting up shop, waiting for the new ball to arrive. Can’t see any pacemen warming up just yet, though.
72nd over: Pakistan 195-6 (Asad Shafiq 50, Yasir Shah 20)
Just two singles off Lyon’s over, included one that brought up Asad’s fifty. That is all.
Asad registers his fifty, a timely and well constructed knock, off 99 balls. It’s his 24th Test fifty and he won’t have made many more important ones than this.
71st over: Pakistan 193-6 (Asad Shafiq 49, Yasir Shah 19)
Labuschagne continues, and may well continue to do so until the new ball is due, but his radar goes AWOL somewhat and Asad drives the wide full-toss past mid-off for two, drawing an extravagant save from Cummins whose knee takes more than a divot or two out of the Gabba turf. And that is the fifty partnership for this seventh wicket.
70th over: Pakistan 189-6 (Asad Shafiq 46, Yasir Shah 18)
Two singles off Lyon’s over but an eventful one all the same, with Asad kind of getting hold of a paddle sweep that clears the keeper but only just stays away from Smith, who makes ground from slip but never seriously looks like taking a catch. Time for drinks.
69th over: Pakistan 187-6 (Asad Shafiq 45, Yasir Shah 17)
A couple of singles off Labuschagne’s latest over. Not much more to add, I’m afraid.
68th over: Pakistan 185-6 (Asad Shafiq 44, Yasir Shah 16)
These two spinners are really ripping through their overs, which is a good thing for Australia’s pedestrian run-rate but not so good for your humble OBO blogger who has to juggle writing duties with the calls of nature. Four runs off Lyon’s latest offering.
67th over: Pakistan 181-6 (Asad Shafiq 41, Yasir Shah 15)
Just one run from Labuschagne’s second over. Justin Howden writes in, adding a voice of reason to the no-ball call that decided Rizwan’s wicket. “Not a no-ball,” Justin writes. “Re reading the rule it’s ‘some part behind the line on the ground or in the air’ and as one can’t see the whole white line / rear edge UNDER the rear of the boot, even in ultra magnify, I guess logic says some part of it is behind it albeit in the air?” Hmm, I think you might be onto something.
66th over: Pakistan 180-6 (Asad Shafiq 40, Yasir Shah 15)
Lyon continues, with a short-leg and a bat-pad in situ, and Head earns his wages in the former position, wearing a full-blooded sweep from Yasir flush on the grill of his helmet. The glass-half-empty side of me says dropped catch, the half-full side says four runs saved. Well played, and the main thing is Head is just fine after that blow.
65th over: Pakistan 179-6 (Asad Shafiq 39, Yasir Shah 15)
Labuschagne in the attack now, replacing Starc, which is probably down in equal parts to: 1. Australia’s poor over-rate; 2. The ball is getting a bit old and tired; and 3. He’s no stranger to a Test wicket.
Nothing doing with his leg-breaks in this over, however, with Asad’s cut shot for two the pick of the action.
64th over: Pakistan 176-6 (Asad Shafiq 36, Yasir Shah 15)
Nice and tight from Lyon, who concedes just a single in the over.
63rd over: Pakistan 175-6 (Asad Shafiq 35, Yasir Shah 15)
Cummins commits a rare misfield at mid-off, gifting Asad an easy two runs that the batsmen turn into a hurriedly run three. That was a bit of a scramble. And probably why they say you should never run off a misfield.
62nd over: Pakistan 172-6 (Asad Shafiq 32, Yasir Shah 15)
Paine makes a double change, Hazlewood now making way for the spin of Lyon. Asad’s cut for two behind point highlights the over. This no-ball-that-wasn’t controversy just won’t lie down. Patrick O’Brien writes in to say: “Are you blind??!?!?!? His foot was clearly behind the line during his run up!”
Is who blind, Patrick, me or the third umpire?
61st over: Pakistan 169-6 (Asad Shafiq 29, Yasir Shah 15)
Starc in the attack now for Cummins. Australia’s quicks look to be a bit shorter than they were in the afternoon, by design or otherwise, and a half-pitcher from Starc almost pays dividends with Yasir mistiming his pull shot but, luckily for him, not finding a fielder. No fortune needed next ball as he square-drives the returning left-armer for an exquisite boundary.
60th over: Pakistan 163-6 (Asad Shafiq 29, Yasir Shah 9)
Yasir makes a bit of a mess of defending a short ball from Hazlewood, popping a leading edge into the air (and the ball seems to stay there forever and a day) but surviving as it lands just in front of the diving Lyon running in from point. Asad them helps himself to possibly the shot of the day, brutalising Hazlewood through mid-wicket with a cracking pull shot.
59th over: Pakistan 158-6 (Asad Shafiq 25, Yasir Shah 8)
Asad has a taste for it now, driving Cummins on the up and beating gully for a welcome boundary. Peter Miller is with me, and the rest of the planet bar the third umpire, on that no-ball call. “Clearly a no-ball! What is the third umpire thinking?” asks Peter.
I do not know, Peter, I do not know. It’s to be hoped Michael Gough knows. He’s the third umpire, by the way.
58th over: Pakistan 154-6 (Asad Shafiq 21, Yasir Shah 8)
Asad treats himself to a rare attacking shot and reaps the rewards, pulling Hazlewood through mid-wicket for three. And I’m looking, I really am, but I still can’t see any of that boot behind the crease line.
57th over: Pakistan 151-6 (Asad Shafiq 18, Yasir Shah 8)
Yasir picks up where the restless Rizwan left off, cutting Cummins backward of point for a good-looking boundary. Short and wide, the delivery deserved no less.
56th over: Pakistan 147-6 (Asad Shafiq 18, Yasir Shah 4)
Yasir clips Hazlewood through mid-on for three. Now, back to that no-ball call. Check out the replay below and make up your own mind. For the life of me, I can’t see any of Cummin’s foot behind that line.
55th over: Pakistan 144-6 (Asad Shafiq 18, Yasir Shah 1)
Nicinfo has tweeted in, questioning the wisdom of the third umpire in that Rizwan dismissal. “No ball surely,” tweets Nicinfo. I agree, sir.
Wicket! Rizwan c Paine b Cummins 37 (Pakistan 143-6)
Rizwan’s breezy contribution comes to an end as Cummins catches him on the crease with one just short of a length, and Paine completes the job off the resultant edge. But this dismissal is not without its controversy, with doubts over whether any part of Cummins’ front foot was behind the line. Replays were being examined at length, and it looked like Rizwan would be recalled to the centre, but the wicket stands. Not too sure about that decision.
54th over: Pakistan 143-5 (Asad Shafiq 18, Mohammad Rizwan 37)
Hazlewood in the attack now. Rizwan maintains his resolve to keep the score ticking over, edging less than convincingly for a boundary.
53rd over: Pakistan 138-5 (Asad Shafiq 18, Mohammad Rizwan 32)
One thing you can’t doubt about Rizwan is his intent, or his conviction for that matter. I’m tipping there might have been a Red Bull or two for tea because he’s returned for the evening session with wings, clobbering Cummins for three boundaries (including two off the first two balls) and taking 13 runs off the over. You could say he’s gone mental (Alan would), but in fact they were all thoroughly conventional, thoroughly controlled shots.
Tea – Pakistan 125-5 (Asad Shafiq 18, Mohammad Rizwan 19)
Well, that wasn’t what Pakistan had in mind after doing so well to put themselves in a solid position in the morning. The visitors went from 75 without loss to 94-5 in what seemed an instant. Plaudits to Australia’s pacemen on what looks a good batting deck, but Pakistan’s decline was attributed in no small part to some curious strokeplay. Like this from Babar Azam.
52nd over: Pakistan 125-5 (Asad Shafiq 18, Mohammad Rizwan 19)
A maiden from Lyon and mostly uneventful stuff apart from the penultimate delivery, which angles across Asad and beats the outside edge. Judging by Paine’s response, that was a coat of lacquer from touching the bat.
51st over: Pakistan 125-5 (Asad Shafiq 18, Mohammad Rizwan 19)
Outstanding counter-attacking batting from Rizwan, who takes eight runs off the last two deliveries of Cummins’ over – first a sweetly timed straight drive before a savagely struck hook shot that crashes into the fence past deep square.
50th over: Pakistan 116-5 (Asad Shafiq 17, Mohammad Rizwan 11)
Rizwan clearly doesn’t plan to block his way out of this crisis, dancing down the pitch to Lyon and driving him down the ground for an impressive boundary. A lovely shot from a man who also smells rather nice, apparently.
49th over: Pakistan 111-5 (Asad Shafiq 16, Mohammad Rizwan 7)
Cummins now returns to the attack – well, he’s now nice and loose after that mad dash to the boundary. It must be nice for Paine to have so many options. Kid in a lolly shop. Cummins’ radar will likely improve for his first over back, driven by Rizwan through the covers for two before straying down leg and conceding four leg-byes.
48th over: Pakistan 105-5 (Asad Shafiq 16, Mohammad Rizwan 5)
A little too short from Lyon and this allows Rizwan time and space to punch the spinner past point. Equally great chasing from Cummins, who slips his big frame into top gear and slides near the rope to restrict the shot to three runs.