KARACHI: When Babar Azam walked into bat on Day 4 after Pakistan had lost 2 wickets for 21 while chasing 506 runs, there were people questioning his credentials as a Test player and more importantly whether he could lead the Test side. By the time, the day’s play ended, Babar silenced all his critics with a brilliant century – his first in Tests since February 2020.
Day 4 started off with the Australian batters Usman Khawaja and Marnus Labuschagne coming out to bat. The latter was dismissed quickly by Shaheen Shah Afridi before the Australians decided that they had enough runs on the board to roll over Pakistan. Imam ul Haq and Abdullah Shafique came out to bat with Imam getting dismissed cheaply by Nathan Lyon by a ball that kept straight and pinned him in front.
Further salt was added to Pakistan’s wounds when Imam decided to review a plumb LWB call. Azhar Ali joined Shafique in the middle and got dismissed by a short ball that kept low. The replays showed that had Azhar reviewed the decision, it would have been overturned.
When Babar joined Shafique in the middle, the game looked all but over for Pakistan. But a superb fightback from the captain, equally supported by Shafique at the other end means that Pakistan will resume the innings at 192/2 on Day 5, needing 314 more runs to win the game.