Indian seamers calls the shots in Rawalpindi

Published: Tuesday, April 13, 2004, 18:01 [IST]
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Rawalpindi: Indian seamers wrecked the Pakistan top-order to give their team a dream start in their quest for a historic series win on the first day of the third and series deciding cricket Test in Rawalpindi on Tuesday.

The seamers -- Irfan Pathan, Lakshmipathy Balaji and Ashish Nehra -- justified captain Sourav Ganguly's decision to bowl first on a lively track after winning the toss at the Pindi Cricket Stadium to leave Pakistan gasping at 96 for four at lunch.

With Imran Farhat, Taufiq Umar, Yasir Hameed and captain Inzamam-ul- Haq back in the pavilion, Pakistan were left with a herculean task to post a decent total on the board. At the break, vice-captain Yousuf Youhana was batting on one and rookie Asim Kamal was on 16.

For the first 10 overs of the match, nothing seemed going right for the inexperienced Indian seamers, who tried a bit too hard to make the most of the green-top wicket. But that failed to yield any result as both Nehra and Balaji bowled wayward initially as Pakistan took their score to 34 for no loss.

But the complexion of the game changed soon after as India removed both the openers, Balaji accounting for Umar (9) in the 11th over and in the next Nehra claiming Farhat for 16. Both the batsmen got out leg before as Pakistan slumped to 34 for two.

India wins the toss, elects to field first

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