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Pakistan Lose Second Test and Series to Australia Despite Valiant Fight

Pakistan’s hopes of levelling the series against Australia were dashed on Friday as they lost the second Test in Melbourne by 79 runs. The Green Shirts showed some resilience in their chase of 317, but were eventually bowled out for 237 in the final session of the fourth day.

Australia’s pace spearhead Pat Cummins was the star of the show, taking five wickets in the second innings and 10 in the match. He was well supported by Mitchell Starc, who claimed four wickets, including the crucial one of Agha Salman.

Pakistan’s captain Shan Masood led from the front with a fluent 60, but his dismissal triggered a collapse that saw Pakistan lose five wickets for 18 runs. Mohammad Rizwan and Agha Salman tried to revive the innings with a 57-run stand, but their partnership was broken by a controversial decision.

Rizwan was given out caught behind off Cummins after Australia reviewed a not-out call by the on-field umpire. The third umpire ruled that there was a spike on the snickometer as the ball passed Rizwan’s glove, but the hotspot showed no mark. Rizwan, who was batting on 35, walked off in disbelief, leaving Pakistan 98 runs short of the target.

Agha Salman reached his maiden Test fifty in Australia (Overall 5th), but he was soon dismissed by Starc. The tailenders did not offer any resistance, as Australia wrapped up the win and the series with a day to spare.

Pakistan have now lost 16 consecutive Tests in Australia, dating back to 1995. They have also failed to win a Test series in Australia in 38 years. The star batter Babar Azam has had a lean run in 2023, failing to score a Test fifty in nine innings.

The third and final Test of the series will be played in Sydney from January 3. Pakistan will be hoping to salvage some pride and end their losing streak, while Australia will be aiming for a clean sweep and more points in the World Test Championship.

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