A seventh-wicket stand of 127 between Shadab Khan and Faheem Ashraf spoiled a dream start to Ireland’s Test ‘career’.
Until they came together, Pakistan were struggling at 159-6, after the hardened Test team, who were sent in to bat, were 13-2 after eight overs. When stumps were drawn, they were 268-6.
It needed a stand of 62 by Asad Shafiq to hold the innings together as the Irish continually made inroads into the batting lineup on the second day of their inaugural Test. The first day was washed out and the second ended after 76 overs as the rain came down again.
He finally departed at 153-5, with Boyd Rankin and Tim Murtagh having taken two wickets apiece. Then Stuart Thompson dismissed captain Sarfraz Ahmed for 20 for his second wicket, which put the visiting side in some difficulty.
Faheem, however, decided attack was the best form of defence, hammering 61 off 69 balls, with seven fours and six, but he was lucky to get there, being dropped at first slip on 36 off Rankin. That was made even more painful for the fact that it went to the boundary, and then he added another two fours to make it an expensive 18-run over.
Shadab, meanwhile, played a more sedate role, going to 52 off 91.
The new ball is four overs away and it will be vital that Ireland make an immediate impact to break the partnership and restrict Pakistan.