Australia held out for a tense draw in the first Test against Pakistan in Dubai.
The tourists came into day five with seven wickets in hand and 326 runs behind after Pakistan had amassed a mammoth first-innings lead.
The expert reverse-swing of Mohammad Abbas had forced those three wickets on the fourth evening but with the pitch slowing wickets were hard to come by on the final morning – as Usman Khawaja and Tim Paine starred in an unlikely Australian rescue mission.
Khawaja’s epic innings comes to an end.
He’s out LBW to Yasir Shah for 141 off 302 balls.
What. An. Effort.
14.3 overs to go, four wickets remaining. #PAKvAUS
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) October 11, 2018
Paine’s team batted out 139.5 overs to end the match 362-8 and leave Pakistan an agonising two wickets short of victory.
Khawaja was the key man. To follow his 85 in the first innings, he produced the longest innings by an Australian in the fourth innings of a Test match, batting for over 500 minutes to produce a crucial 302-ball 141.
He had excellent support from debutant Travis Head who survived 175 balls for his 72. But latterly it was a classic captain’s knock from Paine, who batted for 194 balls, thwarting the threat of Abbas (3-56) and Yasir Shah (4-114), that sealed a historic draw.
The wicket of Khawaja provided a late glimmer of hope for Pakistan, as they proceeded to dislodge Mitchell Starc and then Peter Siddle in quick succession thereafter, but Nathan Lyon stayed with Paine, batting out 34 deliveries for what will be a memorable unbeaten 5.
The Test was covered live by Wisden.com Test Match Cricket, a live commentary feed led by Adam Collins and Geoff Lemon. Tune in to the second Test from Adu Dhabi, where former Australia batsman Mike Hussey joins the commentary team.