Pakistan’s Babar Azam skipped 196 and Mohammad Rizwan broke 104 on Wednesday to deny Australia victory and force a formidable draw in the second round in Karachi. The Pakistani pair put the home side on the path to a draw, but Spinner Nathan Lyon turned the game around by dismissing Azam and Faheem Ashraf in a row.
Lyon threw a third of the remaining 15 overs remaining in the match, and with his fourth delivery Azam grabbed Marnus Labuschagne’s short-legged glove.
The next ball Lyon caught Ashraf to raise hopes for Australia’s victory.
The late hour drama Usman Khawaja left Rizwan against 91 with an unlucky spinner Mitchell Swepson with 18 balls left in the game.
The Rizwan fighter, in the company of tailender Nauman Ali (nothing), pulled out 46 balls in a 29-run position to keep the three-game series in the eighth wicket tied 0-0.
The first Test also ended in a draw in Rawalpindin, and the third and final Test will start in Laho from Monday.
Azam’s lead was turned into the fourth best entry ever by a captain, with Mike Atherton surpassing 185 for England in 1995 against South Africa.
His score is also the highest for a Pakistani individual in the fourth inning in the fourth inning, eliminating Younis Khan’s 171 win over Sri Lanka in Pallekele in 2015.
The Pakistani skipper added 228 valuable runs for the third wicket with Abdullah Shafique (96) and another 115 with Rizwan for the fifth, keeping the Australian spin-cum-pace attack at bay.
Rizwan hit 11 limits and six.
Missing Pakistan out of a goal in 506 races, he holds the record for the highest number of all crickets in the Test, which he scored 418 against Antigua in Australia in 2003.
Azam’s blows frustrated skipper Australia and Pat Cummins in the first two sessions as he dismissed Shafique and Fawad Alam (nine) to spark hopes of winning.
But Australia itself was to blame for not dismantling Azam when Travis Head and Labuschagn threw sharp catches at Swepson from 161 consecutive batches.
Azam also survived the appeal against the Lyon spinner in 157, but it was a call for court review by Aleem Dar.
Lyon was Australia’s best bowler in the 4-112 marathon with 55 overs.
Earlier, Cummins hit eight minutes before lunch to end an epic third wicket stand with a 249 point.
Shafic, who failed to score 136 in the first test, moved Cummins to 96.
But on his next move, the fast-paced Australian ball took the right to another drive, this time finding the edge.
Smith made a sharp catch on the slip, leaving the same batter on the 20th, from a more direct chance of escaping Cummins the day before.
(This story was not edited by NDTV staff and was automatically created from a union feed.)
Topics covered in this article