Ireland bowl in inaugural Test against Pakistan

Shadab Faheem revive Pakistan

Ireland bowl in inaugural Test against Pakistan

The hosts would have had more to celebrate on the day had they found a way to get rid of Shadab Khan (52 not out) and Faheem Ashraf (61 not out), but they won't be too disappointed in the way their opening day in Test cricket unfolded.

Azhar Ali dug out a Murtagh delivery and called for a quick legside single.

Ireland's long-awaited Test match debut was delayed by the elements yesterday, with the first day of their historic contest against Pakistan washed out.

Azhar Ali (4) and Imam-ul-Haq (7) were sent in to bat before a weird start saw the latter involved in a nasty collision with both Tyrone Kane and wicketkeeper Niall O'Brien following the very first delivery.

They had to bat 280 overs (214 in the first innings) in Harare against India to achieve that and, while Ireland should not have to bat that long if they are to claim what would be a memorable draw, with a good forecast today Boyd Rankin should finally win his second Test cap and 10 other proud players - Craig Young, Stuart Thompson and James Shannon are expected to miss out - will, finally, win their first.

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And the very next ball 13 for one became 13 for two when left-hander Imam-ul-Haq, who was also making his Test debut, was lbw for seven to a Tim Murtagh delivery that came back into him.

The left-hander, who came into this match following fifties in Pakistan's two warm-up fixtures, against Kent and Northamptonshire, square-drove Murtagh for a stylish four.

Tim Murtagh celebrates as Ireland take their second wicket in Malahide.

That left Pakistan 13 for one off the last ball of the eighth over. The duo added 58 runs for the third wicket to allay fears of an absolute collapse, but Sohail's fall only reignited the possibility.

Shafiq began to steady the Pakistan ship and reached his 50 from 107 balls after the restart.

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Porterfield used all five of his seam bowlers before lunch but it was Paskistan that carried the momentum, going in on 67 for two with Haris on 28 and Shafiq 22.

And when Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed (20) was caught by Stirling in the slips off Thompson, the tourists were 159 for six in this stand-alone match.

But Shadab and Faheem turned the tide in style.

They include 39-year-old Ed Joyce, Kevin and Niall O'Brien, Gary Wilson and captain William Porterfield.

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