2nd Test grinds to dull, drab draw
The umpires called off play after 8 overs of Indian batting. Ind 21/0 & 603 (Pak 490 & 588)ScorecardUpdated: Jan 25, 2006 19:11 IST
Pakistan's acting captain Younis Khan tormented the hapless Indian bowlers, slapping a power-packed 194 against India, as the second Test grinded to a dull, drab draw in Faisalbad.
Younis along with Mohammed Yousuf (126, 11 fours and4 sixes) hit two big hundreds, putting on a massive 242-run third wicket, replete with innumerable fours and sixes. They looked invincible having a field day, reminding the packed stadium with glimpses of their Lahore partnership.
Younis (22 fours and1 six), who had missed his double ton by just one run in the first Test , fell short of the milestone for the second successive time in the series.
After their partnership was broken, India struck oil as the middle order and tail petered out.
Zaheer Khan, ably supported by RP Singh, demolished the Pakistan batsmen lapping up 5 wickets in just 16 balls, conceding only 2 runs.
Pakistan's second inningswent from 488/4 to 490 all out,once appearing as adistant possibility on a placidtrack, on which the batsmen from both sides had made mockery of the bowlers.
Kamran Akmal (78) and Abdul Razzak (33) were the other notable contributions to the total; on a day which was filled with an element of farce as MS Dhoni bowled medium pace for one over and Shahid Afridi, Younis Khan opened the bowling for Pakistan.
With nothing at stake, India's final stint with batting lasted only 8 overs, before umpires decided to call off play.
The final session began with Mohammed Yousuf comittinghara-kiri. He was run out for a splendid 126 runs, trying to force a non-existent triple against the only fresh leg on theground - Gautam Gambhir.
Abdul Razzaq came in next and hit two big sixes to break the world record for maximum number of sixes to be hit. The whole match accounted for 26 sixesby the two sides.
India finally tookthe new ball in the 108th over. And lo and behold - Dhoni took off his pads and charged down the pitch, bowling over 70 miles an hour.
He, however was taken off the attack after just 1 over byskipper cum makeshift wicketkeeper Rahul Dravid. The over conceded 13 runs.
As if a good omenhad enveloped India, Zaheer Khan and RP Singh struck oil thereafter.5 wickets fell in 16 balls as the new batsmen provided catching practice to the slip fielders.
Tragedy struck though for unlucky Younis Khan (194)who was out once again, just before completing a thoroughly well-deserved double century. He had earlier also missed out on a certain 200 in Lahore.
Pakistan, two batsmen short,folded up for 490 as India began its2nd inningswith batting.
Dravid and Laxman opened and kept the charged up new ball bowlers - Shahid Afridi and Younis Khan - at bay. India finished with 21 runs without any loss.
Resuming play after break, Mohammed Yousuf quickly knitted together a well-paced half-century and pushed the Indian bowlers on the backfoot.
The two batsmen already in a comfortable position with 250-run cushion, further stepped on the gas,executing power-shots.
Kumble and Harbhajan suffered the major bruntfromtheir fury, being hit for sixes with utmost regularity.
They punished almost every alternateball, pouncing on anything that pitched close to their broad bat.
By the 100th over of Pakistan's second innings, Yousuf had smashed yet another superb Test ton against India, as Younistoppedthe 150-mark.
Pakistan actingskipper YounisKhan and wicketkeeper-batsman Kamran Akmal continued from their overnight 100-run partnership on the final day of the second Test in Faisalabad.
IrfanPathan and RP Singh opened the bowling for India, trying to exploit any morning freshness from the pitch.
They adopted a superb line - just on and outside the off stump and were successful in inducingedges and mis-cues by the well-set batters.
But with the sun beating down, any assistance to pacers, soonvanished.Younis and Akmal, seizing the initiative,resumed making mockery of the bowling attack.
However,even on the flattest of flat pitch, driving on the up,isfraught with danger. Kamran Akmal erred in judgement, hitting uppishly on Pathan's short ball and hauled it straight to Kumble at gully.
Next man in, Mohammed Yousuf, soon brought the stadium to light with resplendent drives on the off side. Younis, already middling everything, too joined him.
Dravid, in frustration,adopted a 3-6 field and packed fielderson the leg -within the 30-yard circle.
But the duo -the class batsmen that they are -still pierced the field. At lunch, Younis had hit his 2nd hundred in as many matches as Yousuf inched towards fifty.
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First Published: Jan 25, 2006 10:49 IST