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Shafiq hits ton as Oz get good workout

Asad Shafiq geared up for the upcoming Test series against Australia by hitting a century in a four-day practice match between Pakistan ‘A’ and the tourists in Sharjah on Wednesday. Skipper Shafiq was unbeaten on 108 and Ehsan Adil not out yet to score as Pakistan ‘A’ reached 305-8 on the first day at Sharjah stadium.

Shafiq hit two boundaries off paceman Mitchell Johnson and another couple off Peter Siddle to reach his hundred off 148 balls. In all Shafiq hit 13 boundaries and four sixes and batted with authority against a varied Australian attack, so much needed for Pakistan’s national squad after their batting flopped in the preceding 3-0 one-day series loss.

Shafiq, a regular member of Pakistan’s Test team, added an invaluable 100 for the fifth wicket with Haris Sohail, who made a gutsy 43.The pair built on a 87-run third wicket stand between Ahmed Shahzad (55) and Babar Azam (40) as Pakistan’s second string, who opted to bat after winning the toss, lost Shan Masood (six) and Israr Ullah (five) early.

Left-arm spinner Steve O’Keefe (3-76) was the pick of Australia’s bowling attack which got a good workout before the first Test starting in Dubai from October 22.
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