| FULL STEAM AHEAD: Shoaib Akhtar in action on Day III of the first Test against Australia in Colombo on Saturday. The ‘Rawalpindi Express’ finished with five for 21. (Reuters)
AUstralia 467 & 127 Pakistan 279
Colombo, Oct. 5 (Reuters): Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar produced a brilliant spell of five wickets in 15 balls, to reduce Australia to 127 all out at tea on Day III of the first Test on Saturday.
With play called off after tea because of rain, Pakistan have two days to reach the 316 they need to win.
On a day of bowling glory, Australian off-spinner Shane Warne skittled out Pakistan’s last five batsmen for a haul of seven for 94 ending their first innings on 297.
Australia went into the second innings with a lead of 188 runs and openers Justin Langer and Matthew Hayden (34) started with a 61-run partnership.
But with Ricky Ponting at the crease on seven, Shoaib started the damage, bowling out Ponting who played onto his stumps. Mark Waugh was the next victim, out for a duck on Shoaib’s first ball.
Captain Steve Waugh stayed at the crease for three minutes before he was out for nought, Shoaib having taken three wickets in just four balls.
Spinner Saqlain Mushtaq chipped in to take Hayden’s wicket to take his total to four by the end of the innings. But it was Shoaib who offered no respite, bowling out Adam Gilchrist for five.
He allowed Shane Warne 10 minutes at the crease before trapping him leg-before for a duck for his fifth wicket.
Warne’s haul was the fifth time he had taken more than five wickets in an innings against Pakistan. His victims were Faisal Iqbal (83), Rashid Latif (66), Saqlain (1), Waqar Younis (14) and Shoaib (5).