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Pakistan take control of the second Test
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter


Ground:Headingley, Leeds
Scorecard:Australia v Pakistan
Player:Mohammad Aamer, Mohammad Asif
Event:Pakistan in England 2010

DateLine: 21st July 2010

 

The Pakistani side seemed to have found a way to get better of the Australian side inspite of being in midst of some unwanted episodes lately. The Pakistani bowlers led the way as the they made full use of the opportunity of the overcast conditions to decimate the Australian batting line-up.

 

The day before the match got underway there was heavy overnight rain and the conditions were overcast. Inspite of all this Ricky Ponting opted to bat first believing that his batsmen were well-equipped to handle any swing that the Pakistani bowlers would generate. For the first few overs Aamer and Asif looked far from threatening but after locating the perfect length the duo looked close to being unplayable. Both the openers, Watson and Katich, were consistently troubled by the swing generated by the bowlers as the ball beat the bat almost consistently. Asif especially beat the bat at will and the openers were just lucky to be there in the middle.

 

Finally Aamer got one to straighten after pitching one in line with the middle stump and trapped a shuffling Katich leg before. Ponting was troubled by Asif who was in the middle of an extraordinary spell as he produced a series of unplayable beauties to leave the Australian skipper groping in the dark. Asif then got one to curve in slightly and trapped an immobile Watson leg before who was in a daze while Umar Gul who replaced Aamer cleaned up Clarke with an classical inswinger to leave the Australians reeling at 27 for 3. Asif who was in the middle of an extended spell trapped Ponting leg before and it was all gloomy for the Australians. Hussey who has so often in the recent past played the role of a saviour for the Australians did not do much as Gul trapped him leg before to leave the Australians gasping at 41 for 5.

 

The Australians were in a stet of shock as they could not believe as to what was happening in the middle. Every delivery from the Pakistani bowlers were like hand-grenades and even a part-time seamer like Umar Amin joined the fun as he had North caught behind. After the lunch interval Aamer produced a couple of unplayable deliveries to eject Steven Smith and Johnson from the middle as the Australian innings folded up quickly.

 

The Australian innings ended at 88 with the top-score being Tim Paine. For the Pakistani side Aamer and Asif removed three wickets each while Gul chipped in with a couple of wickets.

 

If there were any concerns as to how the Pakistani side would respond those doubts were laid to rest as Salman Butt and Imran Farhat took on the Australian bowlers head-on. Butt in particular was the aggressive as he found the boundary ropes on more than one occasion. He looked good for a century before an inswinger from Hilfenhaus disturbed the woodwork. Though Farhat and Azhar Ali fell the Pakistani side have a vice like grip on the contest and the supporters will be praying that nothing like Sydney happens again.


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