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Saturday, January 16, 2010

One good session for Pakistan though Aust still in command: T3 D3

Australia 8/519d & 1/59 (18 ov) lead Pakistan 301(105.4 ov, Salman Butt 102, Shoaib Malik 58) by 27 runs with 9 second innings wkts in hand: T3 D3 at Hobart

Salman Butt and Shoaib Malik showed the more resolute side of Pakistan cricket as they batted throughout the first session without being separated. They continued in this vein after lunch until at 213 Simon Katich removed Butt for 102/334b (17x4). This started another collapse as Katich and Nathan Hauritz, who snared Malik 58/144b (10x4), worked their way through the remainder. Only a last wicket stand of 53 pulled them over the 300 line.

A 218 run deficit on first innings was not enough to avoid the possibility of being asked to follow on, though Australia not surprisingly decided to bat again and, after losing Shane Watson early batted out the day comfortably.

By no means a memorable day's play, but a more competitive one, which was sorely needed after D2 Welcome as the Pakistan batting resistance was, for me. Simon Katich's 3/34 from 10 overs of slow left arm wrist spin (is it still acceptable to describe the style as "chinaman"?) was the highlight of the day. I was under the impression that Katich's bowling days were behind him, so it was good to see him return to the crease and even better to see him break the troublesome 5th wicket partnership and take two further wickets. A pity this came at the end of the Test part of the season.


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