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Pakistan v West Indies, 2nd Test Day 1: 5 Talking Points

Misbah Ul Haq
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – OCTOBER 21: Misbah Ul Haq bats during Day One of the Second Test between Pakistan and the West Indies at the Zayed Cricket Stadium on October 21, 2016 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Ineke Zondag/Getty Images)

Day one of the second Pakistan v West Indies Test match saw Pakistan take the ascendancy in spite of the fact that Shannon Gabriel struck the Pakistanis early on with some impressive and quick pace bowling. While Asad Shafiq began to stage a stern fightback, it wasn’t until Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq made their way out that Pakistan ensured their safety zone in the first innings. While there were a lot of points to discuss on the first day, here are five talking points.

1. Shannon Gabriel begins opening spell with some chin music

Shannon Gabriel had a well-documented problem with over-stepping in the first match at Dubai. Although the similar issues began to find their way back into the fold as far as Gabriel was concerned, he was being as effective as ever on a hard yet dry track in Abu Dhabi. He was instrumental in removing the first three players in the Pakistan batting roster and claimed the all-important wicket of Azhar Ali. He then went on to remove Asad Shafiq who was looking rather solid and a bit dangerous.

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2. Asad Shafiq helps add a bit of stability

Asad Shafiq is perhaps the best batsman in the Pakistan side in terms of batting technique. The 28-year old smashed boundaries at will whilst batting and also impressed with some fantastic batting acumen, something seldom shown by a Pakistani batsman in recent times. However, despite this, Shafiq went about fighting back against the short-pitch deliveries deployed by both Gabriel and Cummins en route to his 68. Needless to say, his knock included seven boundaries.

3. Younis Khan fights fire with fire

While the West Indies bowlers were certainly making waves with their bowling patterns, it took an experienced hand to guide Pakistan to their much-needed zone of safety. The 39-year old, who was making a comeback into the grand scheme of things after missing the first Test at Dubai looked completely at ease as he faced the baptism the Windies had on offer. He went on to smash yet another Test ton to his inventory as Pakistan ensured that there would be no hiccups like there were in the previous Test. He smashed 127 supremely valuable runs off 205 deliveries.

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4. Misbah-ul-Haq joins in the party

When the subject of calmness is brought up, it is only fitting that Misbah-ul-Haq finds himself atop that list. However, it was a different brand of calmness Misbah exhibited whilst facing the West Indies bowlers that he looked almost invincible. He smashed fours and sixes at will as he went ahead and smashed 90 important runs for the Pakistan cause and also remained unbeaten while doing so.

5. Old dogs help Pakistan reach solid first-innings target

As mentioned in a previous couple of points, the old dogs of Pakistan went on to solidify the first innings for the Pakistanis in the grand scheme of things. Both Misbah and Younis impressed with some terrific batting as they rolled back the years with some terrific shot-making. The duo stitched an important 175-run partnership as Younis Khan was dismissed in the final delivery of the day.

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