DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, CMC – Leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo took a career-best eight-wicket haul to trigger a stunning Pakistan batting collapse and put West Indies in sight of a sensational come-from-behind win, as 16 wickets clattered on a dramatic fourth day of the historic day/night first Test here yesterday.
Set 346 for victory, West Indies closed on 95 for two, still requiring a further 251 on today’s final day at the Dubai International Stadium to pull off victory.
Left-hander Darren Bravo was unbeaten on 26 and veteran Marlon Samuels was not out on four, with a heavy burden resting on the duo if the Windies are to complete a successful run chase.
Opener Leon Johnson stroked a fine 47 but fell just short of his third Test half-century, five overs before the close. He and Bravo added 60 for the second wicket to steady the innings after Kraigg Brathwaite played a loose shot to a wide delivery from seamer Mohammad Amir (2-26) and dragged on for six, at 27 for one.
The left-handed Johnson faced 81 balls in 1-¾ hours at the crease and struck six fours while Bravo has so far consumed 67 balls and counted one four and a six – a sweetly timed loft over long-on off ineffective leg-spinner Yasir Shah.
West Indies were easing to the close when Amir got one to beat Johnson’s defensive stroke and though the batsman immediately reviewed the lbw decision, replays showed the ball striking the top of middle and leg.
The game had earlier taken a dramatic twist when Bishoo claimed eight for 49 – the fifth best bowling figures in West Indies Test history – to send Pakistan crashing for a paltry 123 in their second innings.
Twenty-year-old opener Sami Aslam top-scored with 44 and debutant Babar Asam got 21 as Pakistan reached 93 for three at one stage after lunch before a rapid collapse saw the last seven wickets fall for a mere 30 runs.
Leading by 222 on first innings after wrapping up the West Indies first innings for 357 inside the first 75 minutes of play, Pakistan slumped to 20 for two at the interval when first innings triple century-maker Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq both departed cheaply.
Speedster Shannon Gabriel trapped Azhar Ali lbw for two with one angled in at 13 for one and Bishoo struck on the stroke of the interval when Shafiq missed a sweep at a fullish delivery and was adjudged lbw for five.
Sami Aslam and Azam rebuilt after the break, putting on 57 for the third wicket to keep West Indies wicket-less for most of the first hour before the rot set in.
Azam was once again free-scoring in hitting three boundaries off 38 deliveries before dragging on to Bishoo two overs before the drinks break and Sami Aslam, who made a first innings 90, was taken low at slip by Jermaine Blackwood also off Bishoo after facing 61 balls and counting four boundaries.
Captain Misbah-ul-Haq under-edged a wild swing at Bishoo and dragged on for 15 and left-handed Mohammad Nawaz shouldered arms to the third ball he received and was bowled without scoring by one from Bishoo that spun back sharply.
Wahab Riaz top-edged Bishoo to Brathwaite on the ropes at mid-wicket to fall for five and on the stroke of tea, Yasir Shah found himself in a tangle against an innocuous short ball from captain Jason Holder and was caught and bowled for two.
Tottering on 121 for eight, Pakistan’s innings lasted only five deliveries on resumption. Sarfraz Ahmed charged Bishoo off the first ball, missed and was neatly stumped for 15 and Amir was bowled by a ripper of a fifth delivery.
Earlier, West Indies lost their last four wickets for 42 runs after resuming on 315 for six, with leg-spinner Yasir finishing with five for 121.
Left-arm spinner Nawaz (2-38) and seamer Wahab (2-65) picked up two wickets apiece.
The Caribbean side lost wicketkeeper Shane Dowrich in the fourth over of the day, lbw to Yasir, after he had added just five runs to his overnight 27.
Holder, starting the day on 10, put on 21 with Bishoo (17) before he was bowled by Yasir for 20 at 346 for eight, and the tail put up little resistance.