Australia out for 318 at lunch on 2nd day of 2nd test against Pakistan | Cricket


On a Melbourne Cricket Ground pitch that continues to offer sideways movement for the seam bowlers, Australia lost seven wickets for 131 in an entertaining session that lasted for over 2 1-2 hours due to rain delays on the opening day Tuesday.

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In contrast to Labuschagne’s 155-ball knock, Mitchell Marsh adopted an attacking mindset, blasting 41 off 60 deliveries.

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Invited to bat first in overcast conditions, Australia reached 187-3 at stumps Tuesday. David Warner, who was dropped at slip on two, scored 38 in a 90-run opening stand with Usman Khawaja (42).

Steve Smith added 26 in a 46-run partnership with Labuschagne for the third wicket as Australia battled through a tough afternoon on a rain-interrupted first day of play when only 66 of the scheduled 90 overs were bowled.

Travis Head (17) fell in the fifth over Wednesday, caught at second slip off the bowling of Shaheen Shah Afridi (2-85). Aamir Jamal (3-64) removed Labuschagne in a key strike, caught at slip at 250-5 after a 46-run stand with Marsh.

Marsh on seven was given out LBW, but the right-hander successfully reviewed the decision as replays showed an inside edge.

In an action-packed over from Hasan Ali (2-61), Marsh was given out again next delivery caught behind, but the brawny batter received a second reprieve when he appealed against the decision and replays indicated no edge.

But Pakistan kept nagging away and further reward came when Labuschagne was caught at first slip at 250-5. Pakistan took the second new ball after 80 overs and quickly removed Alex Carey (4) and Mitchell Starc (9).

Marsh, who struck six fours and one six, holed out to deep third man at 286-8.

The third test in the three-match series is scheduled to begin Jan. 3 at the Sydney Cricket Ground, where Pakistan won its last test in Australia nearly 30 years ago.

Australia won the first test in Perth last week by 360 runs. (AP) ATK ATK

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