Karachi: Inzamam-ul-Haq and Yousuf Youhana have donned the role of saviours for Pakistan on the opening day of the third Test at the National Stadium, Karachi on Thursday. Their unbroken fourth wicket partnership was a heart break for England. Pakistan had scored 160 for three at tea with Inzamam unbeaten on 66 and Youhana batting on 31.Inzamam-ul-Haq and Yousuf Youhana are the most stable and seasoned middle order batsmen for Pakistan. They brought all their experience and patience forward as they thwarted England's bid for more wickets in the second session of the day. Inzamam and Youhana added 89 runs in two hours after lunch by far the most fruitful session for the home side. England captain Nasser Hussain introduced spinner Ian Salibury towards the end of the third hour of play.
Inzamam and Youhana are very good players of spin and did not give their team any qualms.The honours in the pre-lunch session were even as Pakistan reached 71 for three off 25 overs. Even momentary lapses of concentration can prove very costly and Pakistan's opening batsman Saeed Anwar learnt it the hard way. Anwar, who was timing the ball better and picking the runs, was caught in two minds against Darren Gough and paid a heavy price.Playing across in trying to work the ball away on the on side, Anwar was caught plumb in front of the wicket. Umpire Steve Bucknor of West Indies had absolutely no hesitation in upholding the appeal. Pakistan lost their first wicket with just eight runs on the board and opener Imran Nazir yet to open his account.
England relied on their medium pacers in the first session of play. Marcus Trescothick, who surprisingly came as one change bowler, accounted for Imran Nazir when he was caught by Ashley Giles. Salim Elahi was going along nicely before he was bowled by Andrew Caddick for 28 off 55 balls with five fours.Pakistan's aspirations suffered a blow even before the start of the match as ace medium pacer Wasim Akram ruled himself out with injury. Akram, who had been under the threat of being dropped because of his continued poor run, suffered a back spasm while practicing in the morning and was replaced by Waqar Younis.
Shahid Afridi, who was dropped initially and then recalled due to the indisposition of Qaiser Abbas, retained his place but was relegated down the batting order. Imran Nazir replaced off-spinner Arshad Ayub and took the opener's slot. Moin Khan won the toss and elected to bat on a slow wicket.