Azam & Sohail tons swell Pakistan A lead to 338
SHARJAH, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Young batsman Babar Azam and test hopeful Haris Sohail smashed centuries as Pakistan A swelled its lead to 338 against Australia on the third day of their four-day match on Friday.
Azam, 20, made an unbeaten 114 and rookie left-hander Sohail, who has been named in a 19-man squad for next week’s first test, scored a solid 103. Their double-century stand anchored Pakistan A to 306-3 at stumps after achieving a slender 32-run first-innings lead.
Australia had a sniff when offspinner Nathan Lyon removed Shan Masood and Israrullah off successive deliveries, and Ahmed Shehzad was run out to reduce Pakistan A to 87-3 shortly after lunch.
But Azam and Sohail produced a 219-run fourth-wicket stand and batted confidently against Australia’s spinners and fast bowlers, who bowled in short spells in the heat.
Azam was the first to reach three figures when he pushed James Faulkner to mid on for a single, and hit nine fours and three sixes in his 178-ball knock.
Sohail was more enterprising, and raised his century when he upper cut Mitchell Starc to the third man boundary in the last over of the day for his ninth four of the innings. He added three sixes.
Pakistan A 305-8 declared and 306-3 (Babar Azam 114 not out, Haris Sohail 103 out, Ahmed Shehzad 59; Nathan Lyon 2-49) leads Australia 273-8 declared by 338 runs.