Published: Sun, May 13, 2018
Sport | By Fredrick Flores

Rain and Pakistan rally dampen Ireland's Test bow

Rain and Pakistan rally dampen Ireland's Test bow

Ireland is the 11th nation to play the longest format of the game after the International Cricket Council awarded test status last June.

Pakistan were reduced to 13-2, with Boyd Rankin and Tim Murtagh the successful bowlers, but Pakistan, sent into bat by Ireland captain William Porterfield after rain washed out Friday's opening day, recovered to 67-2 at lunch on the second day.

Ireland were awarded Test status past year by the ICC and it was confirmed in October that Pakistan would be the first opponents for the new boys.

The opening day was completely wiped out by bad weather on Friday.

Middlesex paceman Tim Murtagh led Ireland's attack with two wickets for 33 runs from 17 overs, with Boyd Rankin taking two for 58 in 17 overs.

A day after Ireland's players were seen skulking around in the pavilion as rain dashed their hopes of an ideal start to their Test career, the sun shone brightly on Saturday (May 12) and those at The Village in Malahide were in for a treat as the hosts picked up six wickets to reduce Pakistan to 268 after rain forced stumps on the second day of the one-off Test.

Azhar Ali (4) and Imam-ul-Haq (7) were sent in to bat before a freaky start saw the latter involved in a nasty collision with both Tyrone Kane and wicketkeeper Niall O'Brien following the very first delivery.

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Merrion all-rounder Kane was quickly to his feet, but Imam, a nephew of Inzaman-ul-Haq - a man not known for his running between the wickets - required lengthy treatment after injuring his neck in the collision. The second time was in a 71st over in which Ashraf plundered seamer Boyd Rankin for four boundaries to rush to his maiden half-century in 52 balls.

Rankin, the former England worldwide and only Irish player with test experience, had the honor of Ireland's first test wicket when Azhar Ali (4) edged him to second slip in the eighth over.

Pakistan: Azhar Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Haris Sohail, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Sarfraz Ahmed (c & wk), Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Abbas, Rahat Ali.

Shafiq moved to a 107-ball 50 in the afternoon session as his side reached 135-4.

But he recovered and faced his first ball, the second of the match, from Murtagh with Imam, who had had a cold press applied to the back of his neck, playing and missing before he saw out the remainder of the over at a sunny Malahide.

After a brief delay, Imam was able to carry on, with no wicket lost.

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