Pakistan flounder against Gabriel-inspired Windies
Bridgetown (Barbados) (AFP)
Shannon Gabriel led a West Indies fast bowling assault that decimated Pakistan's top-order batting and reduced them to 35 for five at lunch on the final day of the second Test.
Pakistan had been set a victory target of 188 at Kensington Oval in Barbados on Thursday.
Yasir Shah claimed the final wicket of the home side’s second innings in the first over of the day to finish with seven for 94 in the innings and nine for 177 in the match.
However that proved to be the only high point of the session for the visitors who struggled to cope with a disciplined pace attack on a pitch that occasionally exaggerated the worries of the Pakistani batsmen who now require 153 runs to win.
Gabriel started the rout with the wicket of first innings century-maker Azhar Ali as the opening batsman miscued an attempted pull for Shimron Hetmyer to take a diving catch at midwicket.
Alzarri Joseph, sharing the new ball with Gabriel, struck in the very next over when Babar Azam flicked at a leg-side delivery for wicketkeeper Shane Dowrich to snare the chance and consign Pakistan's brightest batting talent to the indignity of a 'pair'.
Joseph should have also accounted for Ahmed Shehzad but the opening batsman, who enjoyed generous slices of luck in scoring 70 in the first innings, was missed at first slip edging an attempted drive.
He resumes in the afternoon session on 14 alongside wicketkeeper-batsman Sarfraz Ahmed.
That disappointment was replaced by even more jubilation in the West Indies camp though, as Jason Holder replaced Gabriel and immediately earned the prized scalp of Younis Khan.
Adjudged LBW by on-field umpire Richard Kettleborough, Younis challenged the decision only to have it confirmed by the television replays.
With Joseph tiring, Gabriel was recalled into action to replace the gangling Antiguan and the burly Trinidad and Tobago tearaway responded with two critical wickets in the space of three deliveries.
Captain Misbah ul Haq was first ruled not out to vociferous appeals but replays following a challenge showed an inside-edge that lobbed to Shai Hope at gully and sent the Pakistan captain back to the pavilion without scoring.
He was joined just a few minutes later by Asad Shafiq when the new batsman edged his second delivery for Powell to take the catch at first slip at the third attempt.
West Indies were hoping to get to a lead of 200 with their last pair at the crease at the start of play, but after edging the first ball from Shah for four, Devendra Bishoo skied a catch to Ali at extra-cover four balls later to end the innings at 268 with last man Gabriel looking on from the non-striker’s end.
© 2017 AFP