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Shafiq, Younis centuries help Pakistan nose ahead

Visitor ends Day 2 of the final Test at The Oval at 340/6, 12 runs in front of England’s first-innings total

Shafiq, Younis centuries help Pakistan nose ahead - Cricket News
Asad Shafiq and Younis Khan scored centuries as Pakistan got a first-innings lead by the end of the second day of the fourth and final Test against England at The Oval on Friday (August 12).
 
At stumps, Pakistan was 340 for 6, 12 runs in front of England’s first-innings total, with Younis ending a run of low scores with an unbeaten 101 after sharing a partnership of 150 with Shafiq (109) for the fourth wicket. It was Younis's 32nd century in 108 Tests.
 
Sarfraz Ahmed was 17 not out at close of play as Pakistan fought to level the four-match series at 2-2.
 
In the morning, Azhar Ali, promoted to open after his century at Edgbaston, and Yasir Shah, the night watchman, were both on zero when play started. But having done his duty by getting through the first hour, Yasir fell for 26 when he nicked Steven Finn to second slip Joe Root.


 
Shafiq, however, put the memories of a pair from Edgbaston behind him in style. He avoided a third straight duck by getting off the mark with a cover-driven four off Finn, who put down a caught-and-bowled chance from Azhar, then on 35, before the batsman was caught behind on 49 gloving a sweep off Moeen Ali.
 
But Shafiq, who was dropped off a tough slip chance by James Anderson when on seven – the toughest of the three chances England missed on Friday morning – and Younis both lofted Moeen for big straight sixes over long-on.
 
Younis, who had been having a tough time in a series where his previous best score was 33 in his team’s win in the first Test at Lord's, looked far more in control on Friday. His square-cut four off Anderson took him to an 86-ball fifty in two hours.
 
Shafiq spent 17 balls on 99 before a quick single took him to a century in just over five hours off 164 balls with 12 fours and two sixes. But he was out soon afterwards when a pull off Finn was brilliantly caught by Stuart Broad, diving to his left at short midwicket.
 
Chris Woakes, who had two catches dropped in the morning session, then struck twice in an over with the new ball to remove Misbah-ul-Haq and Iftikhar Ahmed, the debutant.
 
Younis, 38, got to his hundred in 139 balls with 15 fours and a six shortly before the end of play on the day.

To see full scorecard, click here

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