THIRD TEST: Jamal’s 82 saves Pakistan after another Cummins five-for
Australia 6 for 0 trail Pakistan 313 (Rizwan 88, Jamal 82, Salman 53, Cummins 5-61, Starc 2-75) by 307 runs
Retiring opener David Warner survived a tricky final over on day one of his farewell Test after Aamer Jamal, coming in at No. 9 completed a gutsy half-century to lead Pakistan’s recovery in Sydney leaving Australia frustrated.
Jamal’s 82 off 97 balls and his last wicket partnership of 86 with Mir Hamza lifted Pakistan to an unlikely first innings of 313 after Pat Cummins claimed his third straight five-wicket haul.
Australia openers Warner and Usman Khawaja were then left with having to face one over before stumps. In his 112th and final Test match, Warner received a standing ovation from the 33,905 crowd at the SCG and a guard of honour from the Pakistan team.
Warner hit offspinner Sajid Khan for a four through covers first ball but had an anxious moment when he almost played the ball onto his stumps as Australia went into stumps at 6 for 0 still trailing Pakistan by 307 runs.
Earlier, Pakistan had seemingly failed to make the most of winning an important toss from captain Shan Masood in favourable conditions as they crashed to 47 for 4.
But Mohammad Rizwan and Agha Salman struck attractive half-centuries to engineer a fightback. They both fell amid another flurry of Pakistan wickets either side of tea as batting became more difficult under significant cloud cover.
Pakistan, however, received an unexpected boost when Jamal and Hamza produced the highest tenth-wicket stand against Australia in Tests since England’s Alec Stewart and Andy Caddick combined for 103 in 2001. Jamal took Australia’s increasingly ragged attack apart, while Hamza stonewalled and didn’t score until his 22nd ball faced as they defied Australia superbly for over 90 minutes.
Pakistan’s hopes of a competitive total had seemingly nosedived when Rizwan holed out on 88 just before tea as they succumbed to a short-ball tactic perfectly executed by Cummins and Mitchell Starc. Cummins removed an impatient Sajid, who fell into the trap and hit straight to forward square.
Salman had defied the barrage of short deliveries to reach his second straight half-century before tamely falling to Starc, as Cummins claimed Hasan Ali for a duck and finished with 5 for 61 off 18 overs.
After their painful 79-run defeat in the Boxing Day Test, having fought bravely and at times appearing close to causing an upset, Pakistan started the new year with both their openers making ducks within the first eight deliveries of the match. (ESPNcricinfo)