Opener Mohammad Hafeez hit a solid half-century as Pakistan made 252 all out in 48.3 overs in the second day-night international in Sharjah on Friday.
Hafeez hit a 92-ball 76 with nine boundaries and a six while skipper Misbah-ul Haq chipped in with a 65-ball 47 to rescue Pakistan from a shaky 20-3 after they won the toss and elected to bat at Sharjah stadium.
Pakistan lead the five-match series 1-0 after winning the first game in Dubai by three wickets. With his position under threat after his suspension over his illegal bowling action, Hafeez struck form in the nick of time as he added 77 for the fourth wicket with Haris Sohail (33) and another 66 for the fifth with Misbah.
Paceman Matt Henry (4-45) had jolted Pakistan by dismissing opener Ahmed Shehzad, caught behind in the first over for a duck and then bowled Asad Shafiq (one) in his third. In between seamer Mitchell McClenaghan, who took 3-56, had Younis Khan for six.
Yunis failed to capitalise on a no-ball leg-before by the same bowler on nought. When it looked as if Pakistan would post a 300-plus total Henry took Hafeez and Misbah, caught behind in the space of nine runs.
Misbah, who hit two fours and two sixes, wasn't happy with English umpire Richard Illingworth's decision and reviewed the decision, but it was to no avail.
His dismissal at 172 seemed to have derailed Pakistan's innings but Shahid Afridi hit three sixes and a boundary in his 14-ball 27 while Sarfraz Ahmed made 23.
McClenaghan dismissed Ahmed and Sohail Tanvir (14) in the 49th over to wrap up the innings. Pakistan brought in Tanvir for Umar Gul, who was struggling for fitness while New Zealand were forced to make three changes.
Paceman Kyle Mills, all-rounder Jimmy Neesham and spinner Nathan McCullum made way for McClenaghan, Corey Anderson and Henry.
Sri Lanka’s Mahela Jayawardene and Shahid Afridi of Pakistan are in line to become the most experienced players in ICC Cricket World Cup history, after they were named in provisional squads for the tournament that starts on 14 February.
The two players made their World Cup debuts at the ICC Cricket World Cup 1999, and have appeared in every event since then.
While Jayawardene featured in the final of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007 and 2011, as well as the semi-final of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2003, Shahid Afridi was a member of the Pakistan side that played the final at Lord’s in 1999. He captained Pakistan at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 where Pakistan reached the semi-final.
According to the information made available by ICC, if the two players are named in the final line-ups, likely to be announced around 8 January 2015, then they will join the exclusive company of Wasim Akram, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Aravinda de Silva, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Sanath Jayasuriya, Jacques Kallis, Imran Khan, Brian Lara, Muttiah Muralidaran, Thomas Odoyo, Ricky Ponting, Arjuna Ranatunga and Steve Tikolo, who have each played in five ICC Cricket World Cups to date.
Pakistan’s Javed Miandad and India’s Sachin Tendulkar, with six ICC Cricket World Cups each, share the record for the most appearances at ICC’s pinnacle event.
Interestingly, this will be the first ICC Cricket World Cup which will be held without either Javed Miandad or Sachin Tendulkar. Javed Miandad played from 1975 to 1996, while Tendulkar represented his country from 1992-2011.
Miandad featured in semi-finals in 1979, 1983 and 1987, final in 1992 and quarter-final in 1996, while Tendulkar appeared in the 1996 quarter-final, and 2003 and 2011 finals.
Besides Jayawardene and Shahid Afridi, seven other players are in line to appear in their fourth World Cup who are England’s James Anderson, West Indian Chris Gayle, New Zealand’s Brendon McCullum, Pakistan’s Younis Khan, South Africa’s Robin Peterson, Kumar Sangakkara and Daniel Vettori.
Meanwhile, the UAE, who are returning to the ICC Cricket World Cup for the first time since 1996, have named the oldest and youngest players of the tournament in its 30-player provisional squad. Khurram Khan at 43 is the oldest players (born 21 June 1971) while Yodhin Punja, who turned 15 on 24 April 2014, is the youngest player.
The 11th edition of the ICC Cricket World Cup kicks off in Christchurch on 14 February when co-host New Zealand takes on former champion Sri Lanka. On the same day at the picturesque Melbourne Cricket Ground, four-time world champion Australia will square-off against England, which reached the final the last time the event was staged in Australia/New Zealand (1992).
David Warner’s second century put Australia in control of the first Test against India but umpires twice had to intervene as tempers flared in Adelaide.
Warner’s batting again caused trouble for India, scoring 102 to go with his emotional first-day 145 as Australia built a healthy lead in the first of the four-Test series.
At the close, the Australians had extended their overall lead to 363 runs at 290 for five, with an overnight declaration expected. First-innings centurion Steve Smith was 52 not out and Brad Haddin was on 14.
The home side went after runs late in the day and Mitchell Marsh clubbed leg-spinner Karn Sharma for three sixes and a four in one over before he was caught on the ropes for 40 off 26 balls going after another six.
The highest successful run chase at the Adelaide Oval remains 315 for six by Australia against England in 1902. But it was a day marked by confrontations and English umpire Ian Gould had to step in as players exchanged terse words and pointed fingers at each other.
The first spat came after Warner was bowled by express paceman Varun Aaron for 66 in the 34th over, only to be recalled when replays showed Aaron had sent down a no-ball.
Aaron had given Warner a loud send-off, but the pugnacious opener responded in kind when he was recalled to the crease. Shane Watson, Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan all joined in, exchanging sharp words before umpire Gould eventually calmed down the warring parties.
Tensions again rose when Smith and Kohli came together, prompting Warner to run down from the other end of the pitch and come face-to-face with the India captain before Gould again restored peace.
Warner, dropped on 89, was finally out in the 60th over when he was bowled around his legs by Karn Sharma.
The Indians also claimed the wickets of Chris Rogers (21), Watson (33) and skipper Michael Clarke (7), but with each run Australia were making the task even more difficult for the tourists on a wearing pitch heading into Saturday’s final day.
The Australians took charge after dismissing the tourists for 444 before lunch to open a 73-run lead.
Off-spinner Nathan Lyon claimed his sixth five-wicket Test haul to bowl Australia into a handy lead over India in the extended morning session.
— cricket.com.au (@CricketAus) December 12, 2014
Lyon captured five for 134 off 36 overs as India unravelled after resuming at 369 for five.
The tourists lost five wickets for 75 on the fourth morning, with Lyon leading the way with his unpredictable turn out of the bowlers’ footmarks.
Lyon, coming off a poor series against Pakistan in the UAE where he captured three Test wickets at an average of 140, thanked India paceman Ishant Sharma for creating demons in the Adelaide Oval pitch with his bowling footmarks.
It was an outstanding piece of cricket by Lyon that triggered the breakthrough 47 minutes into the morning session when he brilliantly caught Rohit Sharma for 43 off his own bowling.
Lyon dived across the pitch and snapped up a two-handed catch just off the ground to dismiss Sharma and enable the Australians to expose the Indian tail.