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Cricket: Khawaja steers Australia to battling draw with Pakistan

(Reuters) – Usman Khawaja batted bravely for practically 9 hours to make 141 and assist Australia salvage a draw within the first take a look at towards Pakistan in Dubai on Thursday.

Australian cricketer Usman Khawaja seems to be on throughout a coaching session on the Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa March 29, 2018. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko

Set an inconceivable victory goal of 462, Australia resumed on 136-Three hoping to survive the ultimate day to pressure a draw on the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

The in a single day pair of Khawaja and Travis Head performed sensibly to deny the Pakistan assault within the morning session and information their staff to 215-Three at lunch.

Pakistan threatened to slice by way of the Australian center order when Head was trapped lbw for 72 by off-spinner Mohammad Hafeez.

Debutant Marnus Labuschagne quickly adopted, dismissed by leg-spinner Yasir Shah for 13.

After wanting weak towards the spinners for the primary half hour on a deteriorating pitch, Australia captain Tim Paine settled down and constructed an important partnership with Khawaja.

Khawaja accomplished his century off 224 balls with 10 fours, changing into solely the fifth Australian to rating 100 within the fourth innings of a take a look at match in Asia.

“(The plan was to) Just bat. Wasn’t thinking too much,” Khawaja, who was adjudged man-of-the-match award, mentioned.

“It was decent but it was getting tougher and tougher. We thought that if we batted two sessions we’d be in good stead.”

Shah went on take away Khawaja, Mitchell Starc and Peter Siddle in fast succession, preserving Pakistan’s victory hopes alive till the final over of the match.

But Paine (61) and Nathan Lyon (5) remained unbeaten to seal the draw as Australia completed on 362-Eight – the second highest fourth-innings rating by a visiting staff in a take a look at in Asia.

“It was extremely tough test match. Pakistan played very well and had us under the pump for three days,” Paine mentioned.

“Everyone had a plan. Usman was more defensive than usual. There was a bit of a collapse but the guys have been working hard over the last few months and I’m happy everything’s gone to plan.”

Abu Dhabi will host the second and last take a look at beginning on Tuesday.

Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; enhancing by Ed Osmond

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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