Bilal Asif rattles Australia after century stand

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The fightback didn’t last long. 27 overs were bowled in the post-lunch session, only 47 runs scored but more importantly, Australia lost five wickets to once again hand over the momentum back to Pakistan in the first Test in Dubai.
There were already signs of the pitch breaking up to aide spin which made it vital for Aaron Finch and Usman Khawaja to carry on from where they left in the morning session but the debutant fell for a trap which opened the floodgates. Sarfraz Ahmed placed a short mid on and a short mid off for Finch against Mohammad Abbas and the experienced campaigner found the latter to fall cheaply post the break.
With the ball also reversing, Australia suffered some nervy moments, scoring only 23 runs in the first hour of play. Following the drinks break, things went haywire for Australia as Bilal ran riot. Shaun Marsh was the first to depart after being tempted by a delivery well tossed up outside off, only to edge it to slip.
In his next over, it was Khawaja’s turn to fall after playing an ordinary shot with the bounce accounting for his dismissal. The batsman tried to paddle it but with the length not being ideal, the ball kissed the edge and looped up in the air for Imam-ul-Haq to complete the catch. Off the very next ball, Yasir Shah dropped a sitter to reprieve Mitchell Marsh.
The frustration didn’t last long though as Bilal continued to impress at the other end. He put Australia in massive trouble just before the Tea break by getting rid of debutants Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne in the space of three deliveries. While Head edged it to slip, Labuschagne inside-edged one to his pad before getting caught by the forward short leg. Unless skipper Tim Paine and Mitchell Marsh pull a rabbit out of the hat, this post-lunch collapse could eventually result in Australia losing one more Test match in Asia.

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