Smith, Warner welcome at New South Wales anytime: Phil Jaques

Former Australia Test opener Phil Jaques, now the New South Wales coach, said that Smith and Warner are welcome in the Blues’ camp and that many players stood to benefit from chatting with them. “They’ve been coming and going … it’s been purely around helping them get ready to play,” Jaques told AAP. “And just to be there for them. There’s been no pressure on. They’re very welcome and we love having them … it’s a great thing to have that experience around and we want to help them any way we possibly can to stay engaged with the game.”
Smith and Warner featured for their old clubs Sutherland and Randwick-Petersham in Sydney’s Premier Cricket competition last month. Jaques said the experienced pair had plenty to offer New South Wales’ youngsters. “I’ve seen a few good conversations. That happens organically when you have people like them around,” he said. “They’ve been really easygoing and fitted in around what our squad needs, while also getting in what they need.” Jason Sangha, the highly-rated NSW batsman, spent with with Warner at Randwick-Petersham and described it was “awesome”.

Mitchell Johnson tips Nathan Lyon to reach 400 Test wickets

Although Lyon wasn’t able to complete his hat-trick, he snaffled two more important wickets in his following over. The 21st over was a double-wicket maiden – the off-spinner dismissed of Asad Shafiq as well as Babar Azam for ducks. In the span of 6 deliveries, Pakistan had lost 4 wickets without having scored a single run. With that Nathan Lyon leapfrogged his ex-teammates Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson in the tally of highest wicket-takers in Tests for Australia.
Johnson congratulated the spinner on Instagram with a post that read, “Congratulations to my “little bro” @nath.lyon421 on passing me on 313 test wickets for Australia. Bloody proud of your achievements so far and I have enjoyed your success. Well deserved and plenty more to come mate #lookout400 #wickets #baggygreen”

Carnage as Lyon snares four wickets in six balls

NATHAN Lyon produced a spell so impressive even Australian great Allan Border was calling him the “GOAT” from the commentary box. Lyon took four wickets across six balls without conceding a run on Tuesday, to put Australia firmly on top in the second Test against Pakistan after losing the toss. It left the qasi-hosts limping at 5-57 and saw Lyon go past Brett Lee (310 at 30.81) and Mitchell Johnson (313 at 28.40) to fourth on Australia’s all-time Test wicket-taking list. He is
behind only Dennis Lillee (355 at 23.92), Glenn McGrath (517 at 21.64) and Shane Warne (708 at 25.41). Lyon has taken 314 across 80 Tests. Lyon started the chaos by Azhar Ali (15) off his own bowling midway through the first session on day one. He followed that up by immediately removing Haris Sohail (0), caught at silly point, before Asad Shafiq survived the hat-trick ball. Shafiq did not survive much longer though, caught at bat-pad on review on the next delivery for zero. Two balls later Babar Azam charged the spinner only to have his stumps pegged back to depart for a duck. “It’s amazing what’s happened really,” Border said. “The game’s just changed dramatically. “Eleven minutes of chaos.”

Like Tubby at bat-pad: Labuschagne’s juggling stunner

MARNUS Labuschagne channelled his inner Mark Taylor to complete one of the finest juggling catches since the former Australia captain’s 1996 effort against the West Indies. Taylor famously salvaged a dropped chance at first slip by kicking the ball back up into his hands off the bowling of Michael Bevan. Labuschagne’s effort on Tuesday was not quite as co-ordinated, but it was still a hugely impressive bit of improvisation and awareness from the 24-year-old.
With just 0.257 seconds to react after Mohammad Hafeez clipped Mitchell Starc off his pads, Labuschagne was struck on the inner thigh but managed to keep his wits about him. The bat-pad followed the course of the ball as it ricocheted off his left knee onto his right and rolled down his shin. Descending with the ball and turning around as it squeezed behind him, he gripped the ball between his knees before plucking it out with his hands to the delight of Starc.

Past and present Australian greats strut their stuff on red carpet

AN ILLUSTRIOUS group of past and present Australian cricketing greats have strutted the red carpet on a glamorous night celebrating the launch of Fox Cricket. Former Australia captain Steve Smith was just one name among the star-studded pack who descended upon Hordern Pavilion in Sydney’s east on Tuesday night. Attendees also included legendary wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist and former Test stars Ian Healy, Darren Lehmann and Brett Lee — all
of whom are part of a team of more than 30 commentators who share 1,371 Test appearances and 154,472 runs between them. Smith arrived with his manager just moments before Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland, who was flanked by sidelined quicks Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins. The suspended batsman was then warmly greeted by Foxtel CEO Patrick Delany, before the pair posed for photos and briefly discussed the launch of cricket in 4K. Smith took a seat alongside Hazlewood and Cummins for the presentation.

Renshaw and company heading home early

WITH their hopes of playing a Test this series over, Matt Renshaw, Brendan Doggett and Michael Neser are heading home. With Tim Paine’s team unchanged for the second and final Test against Pakistan, the trio will be on a plane to Australia on Tuesday night after the first day’s play to prepare for the second round of the Sheffield Shield next week. They will be replaced as substitute fielders by Twenty20 squad members Glenn Maxwell and Adam Zampa, according to reports from the United Arab Emirates . Ashton Agar will remain in Abu Dhabi as he has also been selected for the T20 leg of the tour.
Renshaw departed for the UAE as the favourite to open the batting only for an unfortunate blow to the helmet while fielding at bat-pad in a practice match to cost him dearly. Renshaw was replaced in the tour match by Marnus Labuschagne, who impressed with an unbeaten 39. With reservations over how much cricket Renshaw had played of late — he missed the first of two Australia four-dayers against India A with a hamstring injury — the left-hander was left out for his fellow Queenslander in Dubai. In his absence Usman Khawaja and Aaron Finch both impressed, leaving him little chance of getting back into the side.

Former Test No.3 starts summer with a bang

TASMANIA’S Alex Doolan scored the first century of the Sheffield Shield summer before Queensland fought back on a Gabba green top with more bark than bite. The Tigers reached 5-257 at stumps on day one of the Shield season after George Bailey won the toss and opted to bat under grey skies on what looked to be a menacingly green wicket on Tuesday. But, in a rematch of last year’s Shield final, the visitors handled it with early aplomb to cruise to 1-188 before a late Bulls fightback - including a collapse of 3-7 - restored the balance.
Former Test No.3 Doolan (115) looked typically untroubled in reaching his 10th first class century, slaying anything short through point and dispatching a Mitchell Swepson full toss to the square leg boundary to bring up triple figures late in the second session. A patient 43 from Beau Webster, who shared in a 134-run stand for the second wicket with Doolan, helped Tasmania into a commanding position after a slightly delayed start due to rain. But Queensland’s patience was rewarded late in the day, with Peter George (3-42) finding the centurion’s edge and Luke Feldman (1-49 off 26 overs) toiling hard. Former Test gloveman Matthew Wade was unbeaten on 37 at stumps and will be key to their push for a 350-plus total on Wednesday.

How ‘mentally drained’ Tim Paine found his form

“I think in England one thing I learned was I probably trained too hard and tried too hard,” Paine said in Abu Dhabi ahead of the second Test against Pakistan. “I was getting into games quite mentally worn out, I guess. “I was using quite a lot of energy even when I wasn’t at the cricket. So it’s just being able to relax a little bit more and not train as hard.” Australia were forced to spend 222 overs in the field during the drawn first Test against Pakistan in Dubai where the temperature rarely dropped below the high-30s.
“I do a lot of work at home by myself with a golf ball and I just find that that’s been the best way for me to prepare,” he said. “I’ve wicketkept a lot over the years so I know if my body and head are in a good position, I’ll catch more than I drop. “A lot of the time at Bellerive I just go up the back of the grandstand by myself for an hour or two just banging the golf ball up against the wall. “It’s pretty boring but in some weird way I really enjoy it. I find it relaxes me as well and allows me to go into a Test knowing I’m in a good place.”

Mitchell Marsh to make way for Travis head in batting

MITCHELL Marsh looks set to drop down the order to make way for the impressive Travis Head as the Aussies look to shore up their batting for the second test against Pakistan. The Telegraph reports captain Tim Paine has revealed the Aussies are looking at a possible reshuffle as they seek to build on the momentum gained from the side’s stirring draw in the first test. Travis Head, who bounced back from a first innings duck
to post a resolute half century in a pivotal partnership with Usman Khawaja, looks set to be promoted to number four while Marsh, who struggled in the first test, would drop down the order. It comes as Paine kept the public guessing on the make-up of the team for the second and deciding test in Abu Dhabi. Paine was yet to inspect the wicket when he addressed media on Monday but it was already clear that the grass-covered deck had received a significant haircut in the 24 hours following Australia’s main training session.

Mohammad Abbas strikes twice to leave Australia 20/2 at stumps

What a day! 12 wickets fell - the first time that's happened on Day 1 in Abu Dhabi. Nathan Lyon stunned Australia with a 4-wicket haul in six balls before lunch, but a brilliant counter-attack from Sarfraz Ahmed helped the home team claw back. Australia looked clueless until the 147-run stand with Fakhar Zaman was broken by Labuschagne, who limited the damage as Pakistan could easily have posted a bigger total had both the set batsmen not been dismissed on 94.
6.6 overs Mohammad Abbas to Siddle, out Lbw!! That looked absolutely plumb and Pakistan finish the day on a high taking two Australian wickets. Good length delivery angled into the right-hander, Siddle played outside the line and missed the defence, impact was in line with middle stump and HawkEye showed the ball crashing into leg stump. Mohammad Abbas was confident about the review when umpire S Ravi shook his head. Sarfraz too was convinced and they got the verdict overturned. Siddle lbw b Mohammad Abbas 4(10)

Usman Khawaja falls A great catch from Sarfraz Ahmed

4.2 overs Mohammad Abbas to Khawaja, out Caught by Sarfraz!! Australia's saviour in Dubai is out for 3 now. But what a brilliant catch by the captain diving low to his right. He was almost about to walk appealing till the umpire, when ump Ravi actually said hang on, I'll check with my colleague if it's a clean catch.
That's the process normally followed by the on-field umpires and then a soft signal is made. When Ravi was walking to umpire Richard Illingworth, Sarfraz continued appealing and Ravi asked him to calm down. The replay clearly showed it was a clean catch. Khawaja will be kicking himself for being strangled down the leg side. Khawaja c Sarfraz b Mohammad Abbas 3(13)

Pakistan bowled out for 282

282 is a good recovery from 57/5, but Pakistan should have posted a better first innings total. Fakhar Zaman and Sarfraz Ahmed inspired a great comeback with a brisk 147-run stand that transferred the pressure back on the bowlers - Sarfraz was scoring over a strike-rate of 100 at times. Marnus Labuschagne provided Australia the relief,
trapping Fakhar in front six runs short of his hundred. Sarfraz then played an outrageous shot to get out on the same score. Earlier, Nathan Lyon stunned Pakistan with a 4-wicket haul before lunch. This is going to be a tricky 7-over phase for Australia with the bat.

Labuschagne has his third taken the big wicket of Sarfraz

72.6 overs Labuschagne to Sarfraz, out Caught by Siddle!! Sarfraz also goes for 94. Labuschagne has accounted for both the wickets (Zaman and Sarfraz). Third for him in the innings and he's over the moon. Deserved every bit of it. Poor shot selection from Sarfraz. Paine had brought the field in to keep
Yasir on strike for the next over, so Sarfraz decides to go aerial. The leg-break dips in front of him and the loft goes arwy, off the outer half and straight up towards mid-off. Siddle backtracked and almost made a mess of it. Juggles a couple of times before clasping it onto his chest. Sarfraz c Siddle b Labuschagne 94(129) [4s-7]

Fakhar Zaman unlucky to get a debut hundred

58.4 overs Labuschagne to Fakhar Zaman, out Lbw!! This time the finger has gone up on a similar leg-before appeal, and it's Zaman who has reviewed. Definitely no bat, it missed the inside edge by inches. And it's going on to hit the top of leg stump.
Three reds. Australia strike on the stroke of tea as Zaman falls agonizingly short of a hundred on debut. Length ball spinning in from middle, Zaman went in with a big stride in defence but wasn't able to smother the turn. So the move to get Labuschagne before tea has worked superbly for Australia. Fakhar Zaman lbw b Labuschagne 94(198) [4s-8 6s-1

Nathan Lyon has taken the 4th most Test wickets for Australia

21.4 overs OUT! Bowled. Nathan Lyon to Babar Azam. Off break length ball, outside off stump down the track driving, missed to. What is happening out there? This is a very poor shot from Babar as he charges
down and looks to hit Lyon through the covers. He hasn't accounted for the spin and leaves a gaping hole for the ball to turn into and knock over leg stump. Mickey Arthur has his head in his hands.

What a session for the Aussies Nathan Lyon was on another level

Lunch, Day 1: Australia right on top. Pakistan's batting in the last 30-40 minutes leading up to lunch was nothing short of chaotic. Some of the shot selection left Micky Arthur pulling his hair, if he had any. Azhar Ali had survived the new ball, which was nipping around, but fell while trying to take on Nathan Lyon.
That opened the floodgates as the offie ran through the middle order in six deliveries, yes six deliveries is all it took for Lyon to pick up four wickets. Zaman looked nervy but has settled against the spinners and his partnership with Sarfraz will be crucial for Pakistan. Can they keep the Australian spinners at bay? 

Lyon is on Fire He knocks over Babar for a duck

21.4 overs Lyon to Babar Azam, out Bowled!! What is happening? Micky Arthur's expression in the dressing room says it all. Pakistan have played themselves into a hole. Third batsmen gone without scoring. Lyon has four
in six balls and he's all over the batsmen. But the batting also should be questioned. Azam facing his second ball races down the wicket, done in by the dip and drift as the ball beats the inside edge to hit the top of leg-stump. Babar Azam b Lyon 0(2)

What a spell Nathan Lyon has three wickets in four balls

21.2 overs Lyon to Shafiq, out Caught by Labuschagne!! Three wickets in four balls for the GOAT. He's ripping apart this Pakistani batting line-up. Another batsmen goes for a duck. Off-break spins back in sharply,
Shafiq strides forward but does not cover for the spin, small inside edge onto the pad and the ball lobs gently to short leg. No mistake from Labuschagne this time around. It was a feather and hence Ravi could not spot it. Labuschagne convinced Paine to go for the review and it was a good decision. Shafiq c Labuschagne b Lyon 0(2)

Lyon on a hat-trick Sohail falls for a golden duck

19.6 overs Lyon to Haris Sohail, out Caught by Head!! Two in two for Lyon. He's on a hat-trick. Haris Sohail goes without troubling the scorers. Good captaincy from Paine, put a man right under Sohail's eyes and he's
hit it straight to him. Flighted delivery that draws the batsman forward, Sohail prods forward and does not get his bat over the ball, hits the splice and flies to silly point, where Head shows excellent reflexes to cling on. Haris Sohail c Head b Lyon 0(1)

Lyon strikes Azhar Ali falls caught and bowled

19.5 overs Lyon to Azhar Ali, out Caught&Bowled!! What was that? The last 10 minutes there has been some irresponsible shot selection from the Pakistani batsmen. Zaman got away with one, but Azhar Ali is not so lucky.
He shimmies down the wicket to counter Lyon, but the off-break dips in front of him and takes the inner portion of the bat, lobs straight back to Lyon, who completes the dolly. Big wicket for Australia and Lyon will be boosted with this wicket. Azhar Ali c and b Lyon 15(48) [4s-2]