Younis & Misbah cash in on chances to lead Pakistan to 304-4
ABU DHABI (AP):
Ageing pros Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq cashed in on dropped catches to carry Pakistan to 304-4 against the West Indies on the first day of the second Test yesterday.
Pakistan's two most experienced batsmen got reprieves after completing their half-centuries on a typically slow pitch at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium. They also led Pakistan's recovery from 129-3.
Younis didn't show any signs of the dengue, which sidelined him from the first test, and notched his 33rd Test century before he fell off the last ball of the day for 127.
Misbah, who won the toss and opted to bat on the flat pitch, was equally splendid and unbeaten on 90 off 146 balls with four boundaries and two sixes.
"I wanted to stand a lot more upright. That helped me play the shorter deliveries easier," Younis said of his five-hour knock during which he faced 205 balls, hitting 10 fours and a six.
"Making the crucial moments work is key, and our focus was on taking singles. That increases the trust."
West Indies bowlers struggled with the red ball like they did with the pink ball in the first innings of the day-night test at Dubai, where Pakistan amassed 579-3 declared.
Shannon Gabriel (2-43) had first-Test triple century-maker Azhar Ali bowled off an inside edge for zero, and Asad Shafiq (68) also played on to the seamer.
But Misbah and Younis propelled the total with a 175-run stand at nearly four runs an over and dominated the spinners with their trademark sweeps and reverse sweeps.
"There's not much bounce on this pitch, but it isn't uneven," Younis said.
Devendra Bishoo couldn't replicate his 8-49 performance in the second innings at Dubai before West Indies lost the first test by 56 runs. The leg-spinner hardly troubled Younis or Misbah and often pitched too short of the length during his 20 overs.
West Indies had its chances. Younis was on 83 just before tea when Kraigg Brathwaite couldn't hold on to a regulation return catch. Misbah's nick on 54 caught wicketkeeper Shai Hope wrong-footed. Hope was forced to don the gloves after tea because Shane Dowrich was ruled out of the Test due to injury.
Younis completed his century off 169 balls when he square cut off-spinner Roston Chase for his eighth boundary before he fell to a tired slog sweep off Brathwaite and holed out in the deep.
Nightwatchman Yasir Shah had just walked out to the crease when the umpires called off play due to poor light, with six overs still scheduled.