Fri, Dec 10, 2004 - Page 22 News List

Pakistan batsmen fail to fire in Perth

AFP , PERTH

Pakistan's preparation for the first test against Australia took a turn for the worse here yesterday when once again their batsmen failed to fire as they clawed their way to 206 for 7 at tea on the first day of their four-day tour match against Western Australia.

Yousuf Youhana provided the staunchest resistance for the tourists who otherwise did not handle the quicker pace of the Western Australian Cricket Association wicket in Perth.

Opener Salman Butt chimed in with a graceful 42 while Abdul Razzaq stumbled to an awkwardly constructed 41 not out.

But Worryingly for Pakistan, opener Imran Farhat, top order batsman Younis Khan and skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq all failed.

Farhat could manage just eight runs before being trapped lbw while Younis and Inzamam both made four, the latter bowled for the second time this week after dragging the ball onto his stumps with an inside edge.

Inzamam was dismissed for a duck when he made the same mistake in a one-day match against a Cricket Australia Chairman's XI earlier in the week.

Pakistan, who started the match with a likely test line-up, had looked very shaky early on when they fell to 78 for 5. Yousuf and Razzaq then steadied the innings to take them to 120 for 5 at lunch in hot but otherwise good playing conditions.

The pair continued to hold firm after the interval, with Yousuf in sparkling form, stroking the ball all around the ground.

He finally met his demise when Western Australian fieldsman Chris Rogers took a diving catch to his left in gully off the bowling of Steve Magoffin.

His innings had included 14 boundaries and came off 68 deliveries with the partnership yielding 95.

The situation could have been far worse for Pakistan with Western Australia missing five or six clear catching opportunities in their slips cordon.

At one point with Pakistan faltering at 78-5, Western Australian captain Justin Langer had six slips fielders in place as he attempted to break through to the tailenders.

At tea the not-out batsmen were Razzaq on 41 and Mohammad Sami on 16.

Western Australian pace bowlers Brett Dorey with 3-38 from 16 overs and Ben Edmondson with 2-59 from 13 were the most effective strike weapons for the home side.

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