Another Yasir Shah and Misbah-ul-Haq special and Pakistan won the series opener against West Indies at Sabina Park, Kingston. The game saw rain-interruption in the initial days, but in the end, Team Misbah managed to win by 7 wickets. West Indies did show resilience in the first innings but could not repeat in the second and succumbed against the foxy Yasir. Throughout the five days, even though rain played a major part on Day Two, some good performances were witnessed from both sides and also the bad ones – which got overshadowed by the good. But let’s try evaluating both teams based on their performance of the first Test: Live Cricket Scorecard, Pakistan vs West Indies 2017, 1st Test at Jamaica
Kraigg Brathwaite (1/10): Brathwaite managed scores of 0 and 14 in the two innings. He looked out of sorts in the first innings whereas threw away his wicket in the second. He had the chance to carry on the momentum from good scores but unfortunately missed out.
Kieran Powell (5/10): Powell scored 33 and 49 in the two innings. He looked solid against the likes of Mohammad Aamer, Mohammad Abbas and Wahab Riaz the entire first session. But could not keep his concentration intact in the second session and threw away his wicket playing a careless shot. In the second innings, he dominated Yasir who had rammed the other batsmen. He wasn’t afraid to dance down the track and drive or play over the top. But Powell was eventually undone by a Yasir special. He still probably was the best top-order batsman for hosts.
Shimron Hetmyer (3/10): Debutant Hetmyer scored 11 and 20 in the two innings. He was selected due to his impressive performance in the only warm-up game. But sadly he could not repeat the same at the highest level. He is a clean hitter of the ball and has aggressive intents but could not survive against the two of Pakistan’s best bowlers – Aamer and Yasir.
Shai Hope (1/10): He never looked like going in any of the innings. Hope managed to score just 8 runs in total and could not fulfil his responsibility of soaking in the pressure anytime.
Vishaul Singh (1/10): A disappointing debut for Vishaul as he scored 9 runs in both the innings. Vishaul never got going and succumbed under the pressure of quick wickets up the order.
Roston Chase (7/10): Roston Chase scored 63 and 16* and he knows how to soak in pressure. He is not the typical West Indies batsman who will try hitting it over the top if in a tight spot. He did the same in the first innings. Chase produced the dead bat and that is how he batted throughout. In the second innings, he ran out of partners.
Shane Dowrich (5/10): Dowrich scored 56 and 0 in the two innings. He produced a brilliant knock in the first but could not do the same in the second. But his safe pair of hands behind the wickets, whichgot some great catches diving to his right, also earned him an extra point there.
Jason Holder (7/10): With the bat, he scored 57* and 14 whereas with the ball he managed to get a wicket. Holder displayed great example of batting under the pressure along with tail-enders in the first innings but threw his wicket in the second at a crucial juncture. He was also economical with the ball and took some good decisions as the skipper.
Devendra Bishoo (6/10): He was more influential with the bat than his bowling. He played tough knocks of 28 and 18 and took 1 wicket each in both the innings. As a bowler, he kept on troubling the batsmen but could not produce more wicket taking deliveries and also became predictable after a while.
Alzarri Joseph (6/10): Joseph took a total 4 wickets in the game and kept the ball swinging in both directions. He also displayed the ability to keep on bowling a wicket-to-wicket line, thus keeping things tight from his end.
Shannon Gabriel (5/10): Gabriel took 4 wickets in total but lacked discipline. He has the ability to bowl no-balls in between a good spell and that will hurt the hosts. He was also involved in an unnecessary clash with Sarfraz Ahmed for which he got reprimanded.
Azhar Ali (1/10): Azhar scored 16 runs in total and threw away his wicket on both the occasions.
Ahmed Shehzad (2/10): Shehzad looked in great touch in the first innings but only managed to score 31 and gave away his wicket while chasing. He, thus, could not make the most of the chances that he got.
Babar Azam (7/10): Azam displayed great temperament in both the innings. His partnership with Younis Khan changed the game for Pakistan and in the second innings, he held the fort from one end despite losing two partners in the process.
Younis Khan (8/10): Younis became the first Pakistani batsman to score 10,000 runs and also brought up his 33rd Test fifty. But in the second innings, he lost his concentration as well as wicket. But he has safe pair of hands in the slip cordon for Pakistan, something which got him an extra point.
Misbah-ul-Haq (10/10): Misbah became the only Pakistan batsman to remain unbeaten on 99 in the first innings. He played his trademark Tuk-Tuk knock in the first innings but in the second, finished off things in style. He gets 10/10 because despite remaining unbeaten on 99, he had a smile on his face while walking back towards the pavilion.
Sarfraz Ahmed (7/10): Sarfraz played a crucial and quick knock of 54 to take is team beyond the West Indies first-innings total. He lost his wicket in the bid to up the ante. He was also good, as always, behind the wickets.
Yasir Shah (10/10): 8 wickets against his name with the Man of the Match award. Do I even need to specify more?
Mohammad Aamer (9/10): Excellent swing bowling from Aamer earned him 7 wickets in total. He meant business the moment he got the ball in his hand and did not disappoint his captain anytime.
Mohammad Abbas (8/10): Lost his wicket when Misbah was on 99*. But the poor bloke did his part more than well. And also he was too good while sharing the new ball with Aamer on his debut.
Wahab Riaz (5/10): Wahab Riaz is fading it seems like. He can’t seem to find his rhythm and strays down the line more than often. He will definitely get three extra points for that catch he took off Chase.