5 Jan 2017

Pakistan stall Australian assault

8:52 am on 5 January 2017

A 120-run partnership by Pakistan's Azhar Ali and Younus Khan has helped the visiting side to 126 for two at the end of day two of the third and final cricket Test against Australia.

Pakistan batsman Azhar Ali during the second Test against Australia at the MCG.

Pakistan batsman Azhar Ali. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Opening batsman Azhar, who hit a double century in the second test defeat in Melbourne that lost Pakistan the series, had contributed 58 at close of play, while veteran Younus forged ahead of his partner with 64 not out.

But Australia still head into day 3 with a lead of 412 runs, after a Peter Handscomb century helped drive the hosts to 538-8 declared.

Handscomb completed the third century of Australia's innings, matching openers David Warner and Matt Renshaw, as Steve Smith's men poured on the runs before the declaration, which came seven overs before tea.

He brought up the milestone with a single off the 194th ball he faced and had nine fours on the board when he was out, hit wicket off Wahab Riaz, for 110.

Handscomb said he thinks he almost dodged that dismissal.

"If Spidercam hadn't been there, I might've been a chance to get away with that. I definitely heard something as I played the shot, I didn't actually feel it on my bat," he said.

"But when I turned around and saw that the bail had been dislodged, I was a little bit worried that I definitely hit them."

- Reuters