Pakistan left-arm fast bowler Mohammad Amir reached the 100 Test wicket mark during the fourth day’s play in the Dublin Test against Ireland.
Amir took to the field despite a persistent knee problem that forced him off the field late on Day Three. The pacer reached the milestone when he had Gary Wilson edge an away moving ball to Haris Sohail at second slip.
Amir became the second left-arm fast bowler from Pakistan after the legendary Wasim Akram to pick up 100 Test wickets. Akram reached the landmark in his 30th Test while Amir did so in his 31st.
Mentioned on television commentary - since his return to Test cricket Mohammad Amir has had 15 catches dropped off his bowling #Cricket— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) May 13, 2018
However, the day had started on an uncertain note for Amir after bowling coach Azhar Mahmood admitted the team was concerned about the nature of his injury and overall workload.
“Unfortunately, he came back after five years (out) and since he came back he has played every format for us,” Mahmood had said.
“We have to manage his workload as well so maybe that’s a sign for us to in the future to see where he stands. We are working on that, and hopefully we can come up with something.”
The left-arm pacer had to leave the field twice during the third day’s play in the ongoing Test against Ireland at Dublin due to fitness issues.
Speaking to the media after the end of the day’s play, Pakistan bowling coach Azhar Mahmoud stated that the side will need to be extremely careful in managing the workload of the pace spearhead.
“Unfortunately, he came back after five years (out) and since he came back he has played every format for us.
“We have to manage his workload as well so maybe that’s a sign for us to in the future to see where he stands. We are working on that, and hopefully we can come up with something,” he said.
“We want him to play Test cricket because he’s our number one bowler and we want him to run in and bowl for us so if workload — I have seen a lot of bowlers and their bodies can’t take it, so they just manage to play one format or two formats. But for him, it’s a concern for us and hopefully we will manage his workload in the future,” Mahmoud added.
Amir had to leave the field for the second time while in the middle of his fourth over in Ireland’s second innings but Mahmoud still expects the pacer to be able to bowl on Monday.
The 26-year-old had been excellent with the ball before going off the field. He picked up two Irish wickets in the first innings while conceding only nine runs in his 10 overs before having two catches dropped off his bowling in the second.
“He has got a chronic knee problem which has slightly flared up. Hopefully, he will be ok tomorrow to bowl for us. He’s having treatment and hopefully tonight we will do a bit more treatment, tomorrow morning, ice as well, so he will be fine,” the bowling coach explained.
With the first Test against England at Lord’s just a week away, Pakistan will be hoping Amir can overcome his injury troubles quickly.
Pakistan seamer Mohammad Abbas picked up four wickets while leg-spinner Shadab Khan took three as the hosts were shot out for 130 following Pakistan’s first-inning declaration on 310 for nine.
Since the first day’s play was washed out, the follow on mark was 150 and not the usual 200. Sarfraz Ahmed duly enforced the follow on but Ireland showed a lot more fight in the second outing with openers William Porterfield and Paul Stirling adding 61 for the unbroken opening stand.
PAKISTAN MARCH ON
Pakistan all-rounder Faheem Ashraf had led Pakistan’s fightback on the second day, which was the first day of the Test following the opening day washout, along with Shadab. Pakistan started the day on 268 for six but leg-spinner Shadab was dismissed for a dodgy lbw decision on 55 against the bowling of seamer Tim Murtagh.
It was left to Ashraf to take the total past 300 and he did that during his knock of 83 on his Test debut. Pakistan declared their inning soon after.
ABBAS WRECKS IRELAND LINE-UP
While all eyes were on left-arm quick Mohammad Amir on a lively surface, it was the nagging line of seamer Abbas that did all the damage as he snared three top order wickets – Ed Joyce, Andy Balbirine and Niall O’Brien – lbw.
Once Faheem had Paul Stirling as his maiden Test wicket, Ireland were staring down the barrel at 36-5.
Leg-spinner Shadab (3-31) finished off the lower order while Amir ended up with fantastic figures of 2-9 from 10 overs as Ireland were bowled out for just 130 in 47.2 overs, allowing captain Sarfraz to enforce the follow on.
TROUBLE FOR AMIR
Oh man! Amir couldn’t completed his over, fitness issue 😪— Aalia Rasheed (@aaliaaaliya) May 13, 2018
Following on, Ireland gave a much better account of themselves as they reached 64 for no loss at stumps, with Joyce unbeaten on 39 and captain William Porterfield on 23.
The fitness of pace ace Amir was the main concern for Pakistan as he went off the field twice. Amir had pulled out of the attack earlier as well. Last year in the Dubai Test against Sri Lanka, Amir walked off the field after complaining of pain in his leg.
On Sunday, Amir failed to finish his fourth over, which was finished by Shadab.