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Pak vs Aus: Pakistan’s Imam, Shafique stay solid to set up thrilling final day

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  • Pakistan reach 73-0 at stumps chasing 351 for win.
  • Australia’s Khawaja scores second ton of series.
  • Cummins makes sporting declaration in final session.

Pakistan openers Imam-ul-Haq and Abdullah Shafique made a solid start on Thursday to set up a thrilling final day in the deciding third Test in Lahore, keeping the hosts in the hunt for a series-clinching win against Australia.

Australia captain Pat Cummins made a sporting declaration in the final session of the fourth day at the Gaddafi Stadium, calling his side’s second innings closed on 227-3 and setting Pakistan a target of 351 to chase.

On a wicket offering turn for the spinners and some deliveries keeping low after pitching, Imam and Shafique denied Australia any success to take Pakistan to 73 without loss at stumps with the hosts needing 278 more for victory.

Imam was unbeaten on 42 with Shafique 27 not out.

Steve Smith, who has had a tough time in the series with his catching, dropped an edge from Shafique off part-time leg-spinner Marnus Labuschagne in the final over of the day’s play.

The first two Tests — the first between the sides in Pakistan since 1998 — were drawn.

Khawaja hundred

Australia opener Usman Khawaja earlier continued his run-scoring spree against Pakistan, remaining unbeaten on 104 after completing his second hundred of the series.

The 35-year-old left-hander scampered for two runs in the final over before tea to complete his 12th hundred in Tests.

Pakistan-born Khawaja, who top-scored for Australia in the first innings with 91, also scored 97 in the opening Test at Rawalpindi and 160 and 44 not out in the second at Karachi.

He added 96 for the opening stand with David Warner, who hit six fours and a six in his knock before being dismissed shortly before lunch for 51, cleaned up by fast bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi.

Khawaja, who returned to the Test side after two years in January during the home Ashes series against England, was bowled on 31 by pacer Naseem Shah but was reprieved when the television umpire ruled the bowler had overstepped the crease.

He also added 65 for the second wicket with number three Marnus Labuschagne, who made 36. Former captain Steve Smith was out for 17 after becoming the fastest to reach 8,000 runs in Tests during his knock.

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In lifting and table tennis matches with India, Pakistan won both gold medals.

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After overcoming his Indian opponent in the World Strength Lifting Championships held in Kazakhstan, Muhammad Usman of Pakistan took home the gold medal in the 85 kg weight class.

In the category for inclined bench press, Muhammad Usman also took home a silver medal.

At the 11th World Strengthlifting Championship in Kazakhstan in 2024, Muhammad Usman, a Pakistani strength lifter, makes history!”
Muhammad Usman, a Pakistani athlete, dedicated his competition victory to the Palestinian people, who are subjected to ongoing brutality at the hands of the Israel Defence Forces. (IDF).

After defeating Indian player Akshak in the Sharjah final of the TTC Open International Table Tennis, Pakistan’s Arham bin Farrukh took home the gold medal in the Under-21 category.

At the TTC Open International Table Tennis in Sharjah, Pakistan’s Arham bin Farrukh won the gold medal in the Under-21 division after defeating Akshak, an Indian player, in the playoffs.

The winner of the open division was Arham bin Farrukh. When she defeated her Indian opponent in the championship game, she exclaimed, “I won the bronze medal.”

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Chairman, PCB Heads Meeting: Jason Gillespie, Gary Kirsten and the Committee for Selection

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PCB Chairman Mohsin Naqvi declared that the National Cricket Team will not include any player involved in misconduct and that there would be a zero-tolerance approach on disciplinary matters.

Chairman PCB announced during a thorough discussion on cricket matters that all players would need to play domestic cricket and that a fitness test would be required every three months.

He claimed that a new process would be developed for players looking to obtain a Nod of clearance for overseas leagues, and that N.O.C. would only be granted to those who satisfy the requirements.

The selection committee’s inclusion of head coach Gary Kirsten and bowling coach Jason Gillespie was also approved by the meeting.

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The captain of the Pakistan Shaheens’ white-ball team has been announced for the upcoming trip to Darwin.

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Mohammad Haris, a wicket-keeper batsman, has been chosen as the captain of Pakistan Shaheens for the two 50-over matches and nine-team Top End T20 series in Darwin, Australia. The matches will take place from 4-18 August.

Haris recently led Pakistan Shaheens in the ACC Men’s Emerging Teams Asia Cup 2023 in Colombo. In this tournament, Pakistan successfully defended their championship by defeating India with a margin of 128 runs.

The Pakistan Shaheens have already arrived in Darwin to play two four-day matches against Bangladesh ‘A’ on July 19-22 and July 26-29. Sahibzada Farhan is currently captaining the team in the longer format of the game.

Following the two four-day matches, the Shaheens will engage in 50-over matches against Northern Territory (NT) and Bangladesh ‘A’ on 4 and 6 August, respectively, prior to the start of the T20 series on 9 August.

The T20 competition includes additional teams such as ACT Comets, Bangladesh ‘A’, Melbourne Renegades, Melbourne Stars, Perth Scorchers, Northern Territory Strike, Adelaide Strikers, and Tasmania.

In addition, seven modifications have been implemented for the white-ball contests compared to the red-ball side.

Abdul Faseeh, Arafat Minhas, Arif Yaqoob, Jahandad Khan, Mohammad Haris, Mohammad Imran Jnr, and Usman Khan are the replacements for Kamran Ghulam, Khurram Shahzad, Mehran Mumtaz, Mohammad Ali, Mubasir Khan, Tayyab Tahir, and Umar Amin.

The Pakistan Shaheens will participate in the Darwin series for the second consecutive year. In the previous year, NT Strike emerged victorious over Shaheens in the final of the Top End T20 Series with a margin of 46 runs. Subsequently, Pakistan Shaheens achieved a resounding victory over PNG by 224 runs and Northern Strike by 84 runs in the two One-day matches.

The white-ball squad of Pakistan Shaheens
Mohammad Haris is the captain of the team, and the other players in the squad are Abdul Faseeh, Arafat Minhas, Arif Yaqoob, Faisal Akram, Haseebullah (who is both a wicketkeeper and a batter), Muhammad Irfan Khan, Jahandad Khan, Kashif Ali, Mohammad Huraira, Mohammad Imran Jnr, Omair bin Yousuf, Sahibzada Farhan, Shahnawaz Dahani, and Usman Khan.

The personnel providing support to the players include Abdul Rehman as the head coach, Mohammad Masroor as the assistant coach-cum-manager, Mohammad Asad as the physiotherapist, Imranullah as the trainer, and Usman Hashmi as the analyst.

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