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Pakistan vs West Indies 2017, 1st Test: 5 Talking Points

Mohammad Amir sizzled for Pakistan with the new ball

Yasir Shah completed a six-for as West Indies set a meagre 32 for Pakistan to win. The visitors lost three but Misbah-ul-Haq finished things off with two sixes to help his side to a seven-wicket victory in the opening Test on Day 5 at Sabina Park, Kingston.

Earlier, Yasir Shah resumed his good form from day 4 but this time got support from the pace bowlers. None of the West Indian batsmen spent enough time at the crease to guide them to a good lead. Eventually, Yasir Shah was too much for them as they folded for 152.

Brief Scores: West Indies 286/10 (Chase 63, Amir 6/44) and 152/10 (Powell 49, Yasir 6/63) lost to Pakistan 407/10 (Misbah 99, Joseph 3/71) and 36/3 (Misbah 12*)

Here are the major talking points from the opening Test.


#5 Pakistan have a settled bowling attack

Pakistan seem to have found a potent pace attack in Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Abbas and Wahab Riaz. Yasir Shah has backed them up in the spin department completing a relentless attack. The West Indian batsman barely had any respite apart from Riaz's odd loose balls.

Abbas has carried his domestic form straight into international cricket and bowled tight lines, generating movement off the seam. Amir looked ominous in the first innings and Yasir Shah is never far off from a spell that puts the batsmen in misery. All in all, it was a complete performance from the visiting bowlers.

#4 Have West Indies moved on from Darren Bravo?

SHARJAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 02: Sarfraz Ahmed (R) of Pakistan takes the catch of Darren Bravo of West Indies on day four of the third test between Pakistan and West Indies at at Sharjah Cricket Stadium on November 2, 2016 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Whiteoak/Getty Images)
Darren Bravo seems to have blocked his own way back in

The Darren Bravo controversy has no end and although the No. 3 batsman was expected to make a return to the Test squad for this series that did not happen after the spat with the board wasn’t resolved. Bravo launched a claim of damages against the board last week, officially ruling him out of selection.

Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope and Vishaul Singh could not quite fill in for the veteran batsman. Notably, Hetmyer and Singh struggled against the seamers and spinners alike which will make the selection for the second Test quite interesting. But it looks unlikely that Bravo will be back in the reckoning anytime soon after his all-out war against the WICB.

#3 Spinners revel

Yasir's six-fer won him the Man of the Match award

Yasir Shah used the cracks on the pitch to generate considerable turn and bounce and trouble the Windies batsmen. He ended with a six-wicket haul in the second innings that turned out to be pivotal in bowling out West Indies with a minimal lead.

Devendra Bishoo also got generous turn from the pitch but could not find the right lines to bamboozle the Pakistani batsmen. His wicket of Younis Khan in the second innings would give him some confidence going into the second Test.

#2 Misbah-ul-Haq is still the mainstay of Pakistan's batting

Misbah-ul-Haq proved to be too good for the Windies

Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan might be playing their last Test series but still remain the backbone of Pakistan's Test batting. Although Babar Azam played a fine innings it required Misbah's hand to take Pakistan to a huge score. Unfortunately, though, the skipper was stranded on 99 as Pakistan were bowled out for 407.

West Indies just couldn't break through Misbah's strong defence and big sweeps. The Pakistan skipper was in complete control of his game as he took apart the Windies attack bowler by bowler. Given that the veteran batsman is on his last tour, Pakistan will need to find a good replacement for Misbah soon.

#1 West Indies have answers in Shannon Gabriel and Alzarri Joseph

Alzarri Joseph had Azhar Ali in both innings

It is a puzzle as to why West Indies haven't unleashed Gabriel and Joseph together in one game before. The duo were exceptional with their pace and bounce and consistently had the Pakistan batsmen hopping in the crease. Gabriel's skiddy pace is tricky and even the likes of Younis and Misbah struggled to time well against him.

Joseph, on the other hand, was seaming the ball lavishly and generated disconcerting bounce on several occasions. That he showed a major upper hand over Azhar Ali, one of the best Test openers in the past year, shows the kind of bowler he is and can be in the future for the Windies.

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Edited by Staff Editor
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