Despite the majority of day’s play going their way, Pakistan finished the Day Two on backfoot, having lost 3 wickets in a matter of just 6 runs. At one point, the visitors were cruising towards the West Indies’ total of 312 in the first innings, but the hosts persisted with their stringent lines and got the crucial breakthroughs towards the end. Devendra Bishoo and Shannon Gabriel took 2 and 1 wicket respectively to put West Indies back in control. Azhar Ali (81*) and Misbah-ul-Haq (7*) have a major task when they will walk out on Day Three to rebuild Pakistan’s crumbled innings, an reduce the deficit of 140 runs without faltering. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Pakistan vs West Indies 2017, 2nd Test at Barbados
The first hour of the third morning will be very crucial for both teams. The major task for the batsmen would be to start from the scratch. Pakistan do have Azhar in the middle, who has once again played a characteristic innings against a disciplined bowling attack. But the pace with which he and Ahmed Shehzad (70) scored runs has left Pakistan with a lot to do. Both the openers did a commendable job of laying a strong platform of 155 runs for the first wicket, but given the time consumed followed by 3 quick wickets means Pakistan will have to be very cautious as well as brisk while scoring the remaining 140 runs. PAK vs WI, 2nd Test, Day 2: PAK in control despite losing three quick wickets
With the new ball available after 11 overs and the wicket being pacer friendly, Misbah and Azhar will have to play calculative cricket in the first session ensuring a strong start to the day, as West Indies will fancy their chances of making further inroads into the Pakistani line-up. If Pakistan lose 1-2 wickets, they might find themselves danger of losing the upper hand from the game which they attained on Day Two. PAK vs WI, 2nd Test, Day 2: The WI collapse, Shehzad’s reprieves and other highlights
If the visitors manage to lose even one wicket in the first hour of the morning session, they will have Sarfraz Ahmed — the last recognised batsman in the ranks. And they will certainly not afford to have their last batting pair at the crease so early in the day’s play.
As for the hosts, they had a frustrating Day Two. The issue of Shannon Gabriel and his no-balls hampered the hosts a lot. West Indies will have to find a quick solution to this issue before one more such error hurts them dearly. In addition to this, despite not getting wickets, West Indies restricted the flow of runs, not letting Pakistan score freely. West Indies bowlers displayed the intent of capitalising on the openings they received but they will also have to make sure of taking wickets and pouncing on every chance that comes in front of them.
Gabriel, Alzarri Joseph and Jason Holder will have to try and emulate the same kind of performance which Pakistan pacers did in the first session of Day Two. With the new ball available inside the first hour of Day Three, they will have to put pressure on Pakistan and particularly on this batting pair. Azhar already has a triple century against his name against West Indies and also with the form that Misbah is from the series opener. West Indies cannot afford to give these two batsmen enough space to settle down as that may take the game away from them.