Pakistan close in on lead | Pakistan Today

Pakistan close in on lead

Hosts Zimbabwe missed the chance to pile the pressure on Pakistan by dropping five catches as the tourists raced to 280 for three in their first innings before tea on the third day of the one-off Test. Zimabwe, all out for 412 in their innings Friday, were also left rueing a fumbled run-out opportunity that could have slowed Pakistan’s bid to build on an overnight score of 116-1.
Mohammad Hafeez and Azhar Ali put on 188 for the second Pakistan wicket. The in-form Hafeez had two lucky escapes on his way to his third test century but his luck ran out two balls from the lunch interval when on 119 he spooned the ball to Gregory Lamb off medium pacer Hamilton Masakadza. Hafeez’s 119 included a six and 17 fours and saw him pass the landmark of 1000 runs. Hafeez rode his luck throughout the innings as in his opening over of the day Chris Mpofu dropped a straightforward caught and bowled chance.
He and Ali were also stranded at one end of the wicket but a fielding mix-up let them off. Zimbabwe captain Brendan Taylor persisted with seamers through most of the morning, Mpofu bowling ten straight overs but finally opted for a change of tactics when he brought on medium pacer Masakadza and it duly paid off with Hafeez’s rush of blood to the head. Ali’s long innings came to an end when he on 75 he was caught by former skipper Tatenda Taibu off Lamb. However, Younis and captain Misbah ul Haq prevented any further inroads and had put on an unbeaten 62 runs fourth wicket partnership by tea with Khan on 30 and ul-Haq on 37.

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