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Sunday, July 25, 2010

How Pakistan scraped home in T2: an eyewitness account

Pakistan 258 & 7/180 (50.4 ov, Imran Farhat 67, Azhar Ali 51, B Hilfenhaus 3/39, D Bollinger 3/51) def Australia 88 and 349 by 3 wickets. T2 D3 at Headingley, Leeds. Series tied 1 all.

A friend of mine (a Yorkshire and England supporter) was at Headingley for the last day of the Test. Here's his report:

Just back from Headingley after a 2 1/2 round trip to watch an hour's worth of cricket..... decent cricket, mind you, and well worth the trip.

Hilfenhaus and Bollinger were on fire and, whilst Mitchell Johnson bowled well in his one-and-a-bit overs, if I'd have been Ponting, I'd have kept Bollinger on until the result was known. There would have been plenty of time to have a rest in the changing rooms this afternoon, whatever the result. The Aussies didn't give up and placed an attacking field with three slips, gully, point, short midwicket, mid-on, mid off..... only the fine leg was outside the "circle".

Bollinger had two decent lbw appeals turned down, a catch to point that could have carried (advantage batsman) and a slip catch where everyone in the East Stand heard the snick but the umpire didn't.

Had any of those gone for for the Baggy Greens, the outcome might have been more interesting - and when was the last time a team scoring 88 runs first went on to win a Test match?!

I can assure you that Pakistan were hanging on for grim death at the end and the relief amongst the players and the scant but partisan crown was plain for all to see.

The Aussies can feel proud following today's performance but what a shame the batsmen let them down so badly on day one.

So there were are.......for me Bollinger looks a class act - where's he been all this time - whilst Hilfenhaus looked solid and bowled well, too. Ponting, as ever, the master-captain. I would not write off Australia for the Ashes just yet.


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