Gabriel five-for restricts Pakistan to 452

Innings: Pakistan 452 (Younis 127, Misbah 96, Shafiq 68, Sarfraz 56, Gabriel 5-96) v West Indies
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Sarfraz Ahmed scored an enterprising 56 before he was bowled by a Shannon Gabriel rocket © Getty Images

Shannon Gabriel picked up his maiden five-wicket haul in Test cricket as West Indies bowled Pakistan out for 452 an hour after lunch on day two of the Abu Dhabi Test. Gabriel and Jason Holder rushed through Pakistan’s lower order, taking the last four wickets in the space of 8.4 overs. Pakistan added 40 runs in that period, though, most of them coming from the bat of Sohail Khan, who hit five fours in a run-a-ball 26.

The flurry of wickets began in the second over after lunch, when he speared a reverse-swinging 152kph full-toss between Sarfraz Ahmed’s bat and pad and hit the base of off stump. Sarfraz had just stroked him for two fours in four balls and moved past the half-century mark. The wicket ended a 70-run seventh-wicket partnership between Sarfraz and Mohammad Nawaz.

Another full, reverse-swinging delivery sent Nawaz back for 25 when he played across a Holder yorker from around the wicket, the ball ricocheting off his inside-edge onto boot and then into the stumps. Sohail responded to the loss of the last two recognised batsmen by going after Gabriel, barely moving his feet but timing his on-the-up drives and pulls crisply. He couldn’t quite middle an attempted pull off Holder, however, and he fell to a catch at midwicket.

A successful lbw review from Sohail had kept Gabriel waiting for his fifth wicket, but he didn’t have to wait too long before Zulfiqar Babar, failing to get fully forward to drive, sent a thin edge through to wicketkeeper Shai Hope.

Lunch: Pakistan 401 for 6 (Sarfraz 45*, Nawaz 16*, Gabriel 3-57) v West Indies

Sarfraz Ahmed kept Pakistan ticking towards a big first-innings total after West Indies struck two early blows on the second morning of the Abu Dhabi Test. Pakistan, 304 for 4 overnight, slipped to 342 for 6 before an unbroken 59-run seventh-wicket stand between Sarfraz and Mohammad Nawaz frustrated West Indies’ hopes of bowling them out quickly. At lunch, the busy Sarfraz was batting on 45 off 53 balls, and Nawaz on 16. In all, Pakistan scored 97 runs in the session at just over four an over.

West Indies took the second new ball at the start of the day’s play, and Shannon Gabriel struck in the fifth over of the morning. The last six times Misbah-ul-Haq has resumed his innings overnight, he has added no runs to his score four times, and just four on one occasion. Today he added six runs to his overnight 90 before Gabriel got one to seam back a touch and go past his inside edge as he looked to work the ball into the leg side. Misbah reviewed umpire Michael Gough’s decision to give him out, and had to walk back when ball-tracking returned an ‘umpire’s call’ judgment on whether the ball would have gone on to strike leg stump or not.

Yasir Shah, who walked in as nightwatchman on the first evening but didn’t get to face a single ball, played some pleasing shots in reaching 23 – his three fours including a straight drive and a wristy pull, both off Jason Holder – before pulling Holder straight to square leg. It was a bit of relief after a frustrating spell for Holder, who nearly had Yasir out twice earlier. First, he got one to straighten outside off and kiss Yasir’s edge, only for the ball to fall short of first slip. Then Richard Illingworth gave Yasir out when he missed a flick off a ball that seamed into him. It seemed as if the ball may have gone over the stumps, given that Yasir’s feet were off the ground when the ball hit him at the base of his thigh pad. He reviewed, and the third umpire overturned Illingworth’s decision.

Pakistan were in danger of losing some of the ground they had gained on day one, but in Sarfraz they had just the right batsman for the situation, with the ability to score quickly and put the bowling team back on the back foot. Moving around the crease and often out of it to disrupt the bowlers’ lines and lengths, he began finding the gaps and rotating the strike as soon as he walked in, usually with nimble flicks and deflections into the leg side.

Sarfraz didn’t hit any boundaries in his first 25 balls, but then hit two in two balls when Miguel Cummins tried to peg him back with the short ball, pulling him through square leg before helping him over the slips. Those were the last two balls of pace in the session. Spinners Devendra Bishoo and Roston Chase bowled the last 10 overs before lunch, and Pakistan comfortably milked 43 runs off them.

Nawaz, who made a duck in his only innings in his debut Test in Dubai, waited ten balls to get off the mark here, but didn’t show any urgency or nerves while doing so. The introduction of the spinners freed him up to an extent, and he brought up his first Test boundary with a rasping square cut off Chase.

Karthik Krishnaswamy is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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