SHARJAH: Leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo and fast bowler Shannon Gabriel shared seven wickets between them to stop Pakistan from posting a big total on the opening day of the third and final Test in Sharjah on Sunday.
Pakistan were cruising along nicely at 230-4 when West Indies grabbed four quick wickets to put Pakistan on the back foot at 255-8 by close of play at the Sharjah stadium.
At close, tail-enders Mohammad Amir was batting on six and Yasir Shah on one as West Indies will look to bowl out Pakistan early on day two.
Pakistan, who won the toss on a batting-friendly pitch, saw opener Sami Aslam (72), Misbah-ul-Haq (53), Younis Khan (51) and Sarfraz Ahmed (51) all reach half centuries.
Ahmed and Misbah had added 80 for the fifth wicket but Pakistan lost four wickets in the space of 18 runs to slump to 248-8, with Bishoo registering figures of 4-74 and Gabriel 3-58.
“We are in a good position to get them out (under 300),” said Bishoo, who took a career best 8-49 in the first Test. “We must build on this good bowling performance by posting a good total and that will strengthen our position.”
That slump could hurt Pakistan’s chances of whitewashing West Indies 3-0 after winning the first Test by 56 runs in Dubai and the second by 133 runs in Abu Dhabi.
Misbah had started his record 49th Test as captain — bettering Imran Khan’s feat of 48 Tests as captain — on a good note when he won the third straight toss and instantly decided to bat, but his batsmen played reckless shots.
Misbah was himself guilty as he gloved a reverse sweep off Bishoo after hitting three fours and a six.
Misbah was lucky to survive a close leg-before decision after West Indian captain Jason Holder took a review against Australian umpire Paul Rieffel’s not out decision, but television umpire Richard Illingworth backed up the on-field official on the basis of sound, which could have been an edge off the bat.
That left West Indian players aggrieved.
Aslam, who added 106 for the third wicket with Younis, also fell to an irresponsible reverse sweep off Bishoo after looking set for his maiden hundred, having hit seven fours and a six in his 172-ball knock.
Younis, who hit four boundaries and a six off Chase in completing his 31st Test half century, also played a rash shot and was caught off Roston Chase.
Ahmed, who hit five fours, was bowled by Gabriel while at the other end Bishoo had Wahab Riaz for four.
Earlier, it was Gabriel who jolted the Pakistan innings at the start with the wickets of Ali and Shafiq in the very first over of the match.
Ali, who scored a career-best 302 not out in the first Test, edged a lifting delivery from Gabriel to slip after Sami had taken a single off the first ball.
Asad Shafiq also survived just one delivery before being trapped lbw as that time Holder successfully challenged Reiffel’s not out decision.
Pakistan brought back pacemen Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz — rested for the second Test — in place of Sohail Khan and Rahat Ali.
West Indies also made two changes from the Abu Dhabi Test, with fit-again wicketkeeper Shane Dowrich replacing Shai Hope and paceman Alzarri Joseph coming in for Miguel Cummins.