Pakistan were 14-3 chasing 160 and memories of their spectacular collapse last year when they were shot out for 114 chasing 136 against Sri Lanka in the Abu Dhabi Test came rushing back.
Pakistan inexperienced batting line-up was put under pressure in the final innings of a Test again and fans began to fear for the worst. However, youngsters Imam-ul-Haq (74 not out) and Babar Azam (59) steered the team to safety, much to the relief of Pakistan skipper Ahmed.
Imam-ul-Haq's 74 not out is the second highest score for Pakistan in a successful chase on Test debut after 105 by Yasir Hameed vs BD in Karachi in 2003. #IrevPak— Mazher Arshad (@MazherArshad) May 15, 2018
“Definitely we were worried when we were down 14 for three,” Sarfraz said after the match.
“But it’s really good that these two young players in our team, Imam-ul-Haq and Babar Azam, the way they played, they showed character, they showed their confidence.
“I think the way they played gives great confidence to the team and will help them in the next matches as well,” the wicket-keeper said.
Sarfraz said a shock defeat was on his mind when the team lost three quick wickets while chasing 160.
“In the last Test match when we were chasing 136 and we were all out for about 120. Yeah we were thinking when we called for the follow-on if we were batting in the fourth innings it would be very difficult,” Sarfraz said.
Apart from Imam, all-rounder Faheem Ashraf was the other debutant of the match for Pakistan. He did well too, scoring what turned out to be a match-saving fifty in the first innings.
“We are very confident. We are a very young side, we had two debutant players, but we were very confident whatever the target will come, we will chase it down,” Sarfraz said.
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10:00pm – Kolkata hand Rajasthan a ‘royal’ thrashing
While they have been dealt a blow with regards to Jos Buttlers, Rajasthan Royals problems have been compounded as the side slumped to a six-wicket defeat at the hands of Kolkata Knight Riders. Dinesh Karthik’s men chased down the paltry total of 142 with two overs to spare in the end at the Eden Gardens. Read more about the match in our talking points from Kolkata’s big win.
9:00pm – Rajasthan Royals dealt huge bow as Jos Buttler is called up to Test squad
While Rajasthan Royals are currently involved in a battle with the Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens, the news of Jos Buttler’s selection to the England Test squad for the Pakistan series will come as a huge hammer blow to the side as the tournament approaches its business end. The ongoing match against KKR could very well be Buttler’s last for the franchise this season. Read more about this developing story here.
8:00pm – Rajasthan Royals bowled out for 142 against Kolkata Knight Riders
In the IPL, Rajasthan Royals were motoring along nicely in their clash with Kolkata Knight Riders before Kuldeep Yadav’s four-wicket burst changed the momentum of the game. The Royals were batting on 134-8 after being made to bat first at the Eden Gardens. Stay updated with the latest ball-by-ball happenings from the match here.
7:30pm – Plenty at stake as Mumbai Indians take on Kings XI Punjab
Wednesday’s IPL fixture between Mumbai Indians and Kings XI Punjab will have a whole lot riding on its outcome. With five teams battling it out for two playoff spots, there are no margin of errors for most sides. Read more about this crazy scenario in our preview for the clash.
7:00pm – Jos Buttler rewarded for IPL form with England Test team recall
Performing well in the IPL can lead to a Test recall as Jos Buttler has just found out. The Rajasthan Royals star has been named in England’s 12-man squad for the Pakistan Test series after he registered five half-centuries on the bounce in the T20 competition.
6:40pm – Imam-ul-Haq’s unbeaten 74 leads Pakistan to a five-wicket win
In Dublin, Ireland’s maiden Test has ended in a defeat at the hands of Pakistan. Despite their early wobble, half-centuries from Imam-Ul-Haq and Babar Azam has handed the visitors a five-wicket win in Dublin. Check out our talking points from the historic Test here. See how Pakistan’s batsmen performed in our scorecard for the game.
6:10pm – Pakistan on track
Pakistan were on course for victory in Ireland’s inaugural Test in Dubin.
Chasing 160, Pakistan lost two early wickets but a half century from debutant Imam-ul-Haq settled the team’s nerves.
Catch all the live updates here.
6:00 pm – Kolkata bowl first in crucial encounter
Kolkata Knight Riders decided to bowl first in their crucial IPL match against Rajasthan Royals.
Both teams have six wins under their belts and are engaged in a five-way battle for two playoff spots.
For all the live action, click here.
5:30 pm – Vaughan in Twitter war over IPL
Former England captain Michael Vaughan and all-rounder Jade Dernbach engaged in a war of words over the IPL.
Dernbach accused Vaughan of ‘plugging’ the IPL and not give due credit to English cricket.
Read the full story here.
Ireland showed they belong at the Test level as they battled their way to a healthy lead at stumps on day four of the Dublin Test against Pakistan with Kevin O’Brien scoring the country’s maiden Test century.
Kevin etched his name into the history books with an unbeaten 118 to guide the hosts to 319/7 on the fourth day of the Dublin Test.
Pakistan were hoping for a quick finish to the encounter after fast bowler Mohammad Amir picked up his 100th Test wicket but Kevin had other ideas as he helped stretch the lead to 139 after the hosts were bowled out for 130 in the first essay.
GLORY FOR AMIR
100 Test wickets for Amir, would have had so many more if he had the right people around him, both when he made his debut and even now, to catch. But daer aaye, dursat aaye, @iamamirofficial! :)— Nikhil 🏏 (@CricCrazyNIKS) May 14, 2018
The day started on an uncertain note for Pakistan quick Amir following a recurrence of his knee injury that forced him out of the attack on day three. He had to bowl cautiously but still had enough skill to move the ball around and get the nick off Gary Wilson’s bat to pick up his 100th Test wicket.
Amir became only the second left-arm fast bowler from Pakistan, after the legendary Wasim Akram, to reach three figures in Test bowling. However, his recurring foot injuries will be on the mind of Pakistan’s management, more than his record.
O’BRIEN AND THOMPSON HIT BACK
HISTORY!! Kevin O'Brien brings up the first ever 100 for Ireland in Test Cricket cheered on by his parents Ginger and Camilla O'Brien pic.twitter.com/mkyLs7DtpC— Irish Cricketers (@IrishCricketers) May 14, 2018
Six down for 157, the match seemed done and dusted. But Ireland showed that while they are making their Test debut, they know how to battle for long periods. The collective first-class experience of Ireland stands at 1,103 matches, which is substantially more than Pakistan’s 799.
That experience came into play as Kevin led a counter-attack along with Stuart Thompson (53) with the two adding 114 runs to not only take Ireland to safety but turn the tables on Pakistan.
O’Brien reached his century with a squeezed two off Amir to become just the fourth batsman to score a century in his country’s inaugural Test.
IRELAND SENSE SOMETHING SPECIAL
Test cricket is a funny game and Ireland will start to think of forcing the issue as they are 139 runs ahead with three wickets in hand. Ireland don’t have a lot to lose and given Pakistan’s inexperienced batting order that had been exposed in the first innings, they will line up for the final day’s play full of confidence.
O’Brien will get the license to throw his bat around on the last day to garner as many runs as possible and then look to put pressure on Pakistan.