Asian Ashes – Team India vs Pakistan 3rd Test, 2006


• India and Pakistan, Arch-rivals; or Asian Ashes.
• First time it was seen some class of great swing bowling from both the sides.
• These bowlers could have been the greats of game if had played longer like Irfan pathan and Mohammed Asif.
• It was Mohammed Asif show with his top notch swing bowling skills.

Pakistan First Innings

It was the final test match of series as first two matches were ended up in a draw. Those years Asian pitches were more flat over the green surface of these days in cricket. As both the teams were looking to win this game to take away the series at national stadium, Karachi. After winning the toss Indian captain Rahul Dravid decided to bowl first on the green surface. Without wasting any time the stylish left arm pacer Irfan pathan in the first over of match did something which have made him a superstar.

The first 3 balls were moving it was cleared but the way next 3 balls moved it was the scene of joy for anyone in the dugout or in the stands. The “Hattrick” it was 0/3 and there leading scorer were back to the hut. After the early collapse top order Pakistan never recovered in the first innings as they were reduced to 39/6. At this stage it was looking they will not cross 100 run mark but the tailenders did some great work to take the scoreboard to 245 in which the century of kamran akmal and some handy knocks of razaaq and shoiab akhtar to put respectable score on the board.

Scoreboard – 245/10

India team first innings

With fans waiting for both Indian openers give a good start to the India team. But it was surprising when laxman and dravid were walking down the stairs and moving towards the crease. That’s surprising! As the ball was swinging too much in the first innings the same thing was with Indian batting order too. India losses their two wickets at the score 14. Sachin tendulkar walks in to control the situation before rawalpindi express welcomes him with his destructive bouncer which has hitted him hard on his helmet. It was scary to watch.

But he is Sachin and start building the partnership with laxman it was looking really good at the score 63 when it beguns the show of artist called “Mohammad Asif” laxman was trying to defend the ball but Asif moved the ball into the air and cleaned his stumps while after pitching the ball it was clear ball moves too quickly towards the wicket. It was the real swing. From here it started the downfall of Indian star studded side and they all out at the score of 238 with some class bowling of Mohammed Asif and Shoiab Akhtar.

Scoreboard – 238/10

Pakistan second Innings

All knew ball was turning too much in the air and expected the same thing from the Indian bowlers after what they have did in the first innings. But it was surprising to watch the home team start building the partnership as there openers were looking more confident in the second Innings and gave the perfect start to Pakistan team before losing the 1st wicket at the score of 109 runs with Salman butt back to the hut.

Before they overcome this loss another opener Imran Farhat also departs when the scoreboard was 122/1. With both the openers back to the hut. The in form younis khan and Mohammed Yousuf were on the crease. The pair added 158 run stand partnership for the 3rd wicket to put Pakistan back in the driver seat and kept the momentum for the other batsman take the scoreboard to 599/7 which includes some handy knocks of young bloke Faisal Iqbal (139), Shahid Afridi (60) and Abdul Razaaq (90).

Scoreboard – 599/7

India Team Second Innings

After seeing the Pakistan batting in the second Innings it was very much expected from team India the same stuff of batting. But the Mohammed Asif had some other plans for team India. First Sehwag then Laxman and finally Sachin tendulkar onto his knees maybe he took only 3 wickets but those 3 masterclass inswing deliveries were the signs Pakistan is going to take away the series and it was really shocking to watch how the ball was moving so badly as even these genious won’t have answer to Mohammad Asif “Genuine Class”.

It was his match only with those unplayable deliveries and really felt bad he couldn’t played longer. After destroying the Indian batting top order at one stage it was looking India will not go cross 200 runs mark in the second Innings however Yuvraj Singh at the one end after hitting century fought back for his team to chase the mammoth total but it was no one who had supported him and in the end India lost the match 341 runs and series too by 1-0 on the 4th day of test match.

Scoreboard – 265/10

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