Ireland threatening to pull off upset win against Pakistan

Wayne CurryMay 17, 2018

Brief Scores: Pakistan 310 & 160/5 (Imam-ul-Haq 74 not out, Babar Azam 59; Tim Murtagh 2/45) beat Ireland 130 & 339 (Kevin O'Brien 118, Stuart Thompson 53; Mohammad Abbas 5/66) by 5 wickets.

Pakistan denied Ireland the dream debut victory by chasing down the 160-run target with the loss of five wickets in their one-off Test against the hosts at Malahide on Tuesday.

Pakistan, set a seemingly modest 160 to win, after earlier making Ireland follow-on, collapsed to 14 for three before lunch on the fifth day.

The fourth-wicket stand between Imam and Babar, eventually worth 126, steered Pakistan away from calamity, but it was one that Ireland should have broken when the game was still very much alive.

In the on-going Pakistan Vs Ireland Test Match, Kevin O'Brien made a century on his debut.

Pakistan VS Ireland test match initially restricted to four days as the rain dishearted the fans on Friday.

No blushes ultimately for Pakistan but they were forced to work very hard following a spirited comeback from Ireland's cricketeers who enjoyed their maiden test despite their defeat today in Malahide.

With 167 to chase on a day five pitch, Pakistani top-order fell like a deck of cards until Babar joined Imam.

Medium-pacer Tim Murtagh gave the hosts the flawless start in the second innings as he had Azhar Ali edging to Paul Stirling at first-slip in the very first over of Pakistan's chase.

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'We were definitely anxious at 14 for three, but we were confident we had a good batting side, ' said Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed.

Babar's run-out at the hands of Andrew Balbirnie and Sarfraz Ahmed getting trapped leg before by Thompson, came too little, too late for Ireland.

"The biggest thing is the way we fought back in the second innings and that showed the character that we have". There's no reason why we can't (win).

It is a coup by Surrey to get Virat Kohli to play for them this year (Mirror) David Gower has been promoting the New Commonwealth Organisation's plans of selling a piece of the historic Lord's Cricket Ground in London for just 50 pounds.

Stanlake eyes long-awaited Shield return ( Queensland quick Billy Stanlake says he has felt lost at times during his three-and-a-half year hiatus from first-class cricket as he targets a comeback in the red-ball format this summer.

O'Brien, however, said the Bangalore hundred remained his best innings - at least for the time being. "This Test match has gone a long way to providing the next generation of cricketers I'm sure".

O'Brien was just the fourth player to reach three figures in his country's first men's Test, with Australia's Charles Bannerman, Zimbabwe's Dave Houghton and Bangladesh's Animul Islam the others. Imam has already dealt with the pressure of expectation - his uncle, Inzamam-ul-Haq, is one of Pakistan's greatest batsmen, as well as the chief selector - and he played an innings of calm authority to record his maiden half-century, characterised by composure and sound shot selection.

"I think the way they played gives great confidence to the team and will help them in the next matches as well", the wicket-keeper added.

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