Australia v Pakistan – Gabba, Day 3: Pakistan hang in there



It has always been  a puzzle to me why the security people wear black.


Got to the ground early today  and wandered around and to my amazement there they were standing to attention out on the ground.  No people in the ground mind you.


Does black or is black seen as strength or evil?  To me it has always meant the latter and I have no reason to change my mind.  There is something sinister about a totally black uniform.


The Australians were out early training but no sign of the visitors.


Is this an indicator of what is to take place today? After 30 minutes still no Pakistanis out on the ground.


Talking of puzzling. Who are those two guys associated with the Australian team who take an AFL football out on to the ground before the start of each day’s play. Seems like they are trying to impress the crowd who couldn’t care less with their abilities.


GOM?  Grumpy Old Man.


Pretty poor form for the spectators present who are expecting a fight by Pakistan.


The pitch seems docile this morning and both batsmen (Sarfraz and Amir) are batting without many concerns.


Jackson Bird finally breaks through when Amir (21) gets a fine tickle and Wade takes it.  Pakistan 9/121.


It is getting very hot out there and SPD will be puzzling over whether to send Pakistan to follow on or bat again. Personally would make them bat again as the Australians have them at their mercy.  Think the crowd would like that too although administrators would rather the game go in to day four.


With this new side playing so well surely Smith should give it a go.


Would certainly show that he has confidence in his players.


Well what sort of an expert am I?


Rahat (4) is run out and Sarfraz remained not out for a very good 59.


Pakistan all out 142. The fast trio of Hazlewood, Starc and Bird took three wickets each.


Warner and Renshaw race of the ground so Australia will bat again with a lead of 287. Reckon they will bat until the last break establish a lead of 550 and send Pakistan in to bat again.


Warner means business and the first 2 balls go for four from Amir. Then the fourth ball goes for four as well.  One over 0/12 The ASX will not be worried about Warner’s business as he is soon out caught by Wahab at mid-on with no extension to the score.


Apologies to the visitors, they have come out rearing to go and Amir and Rahat are bowling with fine line and control.


Renshaw (6) tries to drive Rahat and Younis takes a safe catch at first slip.  Australia 2/24 and the two batsmen got out played for the team in an endeavour to score quick runs.


If Warner was trying to hurry the score along then Pakistan weren’t interested in assisting and Smith and Khawaja where playing careful cricket.  At lunch they had taken the score to 40 probably not what they would have liked.


SPD means business and is attacking right from the first over after lunch and he plays some of those shots that only he can play. One such hoick over midwicket for four was an indescribable shot.


The Australians are now pushing along quickly and the declaration might come sooner than expected.  Smith is exceptional and reaches his fifty with 10 fours and shots all around the wicket. The skipper is certainly in good touch.


At drinks Australia have moved to 2/110 and they have added 70 in the period since lunch.  Pakistan have staged a sit-in.  If they move a little to the left they could have been sitting in the shadow of a light tower.


Smith continues to pillage the bowlers until he miss hits Yasir for Rahat to catch.  His 63 has put his team in to an impenetrable position.


Australia 3/135


Obviously a declaration will come at the tea interval as Khawaja and Handscomb keep the scoreboard moving quickly.  It is a very hot afternoon and the Australians will want to give their bowlers a long spell in the cooler latter part of the day.


The play is getting monotonous as runs are coming at will and scoring of nearly every ball. No sooner said than done as Ussie on 74 hits out for the ageing Misbah to take a fine catch from the bowling of Rahat.


Maddinson comes to the wicket at again a terrible time for him personally.  He will be damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t as far as scoring goes.  His team will be still wanting quick runs.  Why I don’t know as they have plenty of runs now.


Maddinson (4) hits out and gets out.  Much discussion now from the pundits as he hits the ball down the throat of Azah.  Australia now 5/199.


At tea Australia are 489 in front but will they declare?  YES they do.


Ali Azhar and Sami Aslam open the innings to climb the mountain and they are fully prepared as they set out for the summit of 490.


It will be a huge climb but they are prepared to attack and look confident right from the start.


After such a good start it was disappointing to see Sami(15) play at a good one from Starc for Renshaw to take a comfortable catch.  The Big Ship has been impressive in the slips cordon and has yet to drop a catch in the series.       Pakistan 1/31


The day has not been as interesting as the first two and the crowd know it. Sculling and making snakes out of empty cups are taking the interest of the game from the field.  Mind you there is no harm in what is happening amongst the spectators who are enjoying themselves immensely.


It is also a marker for how the match is travelling at the time.


However one must feel sorry for security and police at this point of time. They can’t win whatever they do particularly at this time of the night.


Play continues to drift along and Pakistan are in no hurry to force the pace at all. After all there are still seven and a half sessions of play to go.


Interestingly to contemplate that Australia really do not have another bowler in their lineup who could be termed a “wicket taker” as in the ilk of Walters, Mitch Marsh, Watson.   If the top four bowlers are being tamed there is no one else to turn to. If SPD would only give himself a bowl he could turn the game.


A crowd of 20,915 again shows that the people of Queensland have endorsed the day-night cricket concept at The Gabba. Not to forget the Pinky Pool.


Local hero Nathan Lyon finally breaks through as Babar (14) nicks one to Smith .  A much needed wicket for the home side. Pakistan 2/54.   I think that Lyon will be the key tomorrow which definitely will be the final day given that there is no rain interference.   It certainly is hard to see the visitors batting for a whole day given their recent form in New Zealand and here.


Azhar plays three wonderful shots of Bird for fours.  Great cricket by the Pakistani opener. There is a bit of grit going on.


At the end of the day Pakistan are 2/70 and still with a long way to go to the top of the mountain. Interesting days play without being spectacular with both sides, despite the heat, playing determined cricket.  Azhar 41 n.o. Younis 0 n.o.

About Bob Utber

At 75 years of age, 'Citrus Bob' Utber is doing what he wanted to do as a 14-year old: writing, talking and watching sport. How good is that!?! He lives in Mildura with his wife and 'furry kids'; a labradoodle "Freddy Flintoff" and a groodle named "Chloe on Flinders".


  1. Earl O'Neill says:

    A swimming pool at a Test match., that’s an innovatiion I can dig.

  2. Yes, the swimming pool; far more salubrious than a greyhound track.

    One must feel sorry for Maddinson. Long anointed as a test prospect, he gets a chance, starts with a duck on debut, has three scoring shots in his three test innings, a well as putting down a catch. He is young enough and good enough to regain a spot in the Australian side.

    As previously mentioned it was an interesting piece of symmetry to see the two most recent Victorian wicket keepers at the crease when Australia declared. A question for a trivia night.


  3. Citrus Bob totally agree re black for security guards yep evil and thank goodness that the banana benders have actually turned up at a test match

  4. Peter Clark says:

    Citrus Bob, your observation on the lack of “wicket takers” beyond the top four bowlers is worth exploring. Smith should bowl himself a lot more as his handy leg spinners provide variation. Warner has been known to roll his arm over respectably also. Why doesn’t Australia have more spare parts bowlers? We once could call on Simpson, Walters, I and G Chappell, Border et al to bowl some overs and often take a vital wicket or two. One answer might be the lack of Shield cricket (where occasional bowlers can develop their skills) played by test batsmen these days. Another is unadventurous and risk averse captaincy.

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