HAROON SIDDIQUI

Pakistan started the 2012 year on a winning note by crushing England in every department of the game in the first Test on the third day at Dubai Cricket Stadium, Dubai on Thursday.

Thanks to Saeed Ajmal and Umar Gul as they demolished England batting in first and second innings respectively.

M Hafeez and Taufeeq Umar played vital role by providing 114-run opening stand and other batsmen done their job accordingly and helped Pakistan got 146 runs lead that proved fruitful for Pakistan as they won by 10 wickets.

Saeed Ajmal took 10 wickets in the match, second time in his career, while Umar Gul removed top order batsmen in the second knock to make them struggle throughout the second innings.

Strauss, after winning the toss, chose to bat first and his decision backfired as at one stage England was 56/6. The England score could have too little had Adnan Akmal taken catch of Swann when his score was three due to which he went on to score 34. Adnan also missed the stumping chance of Eoin Morgan. But overall in the match, Akmal took seven catches behind the stump.

Englishmen failed to read Saeed Ajmal’s super delivery named as ‘teesra’ and fell prey to him while playing across the line and paid the price. Former England fast bowler and captain Bob Willis while commentating for SkySports Channel have objected over the action of Saeed Ajmal to save the skin of English team that failed to grasp the bowling of Ajmal.

Earlier in 2009, Saeed Ajmal was reported to ICC for his doosra bowling action. After investigation, he was cleared by the International Cricket Council.

In the second innings, Umar Gul ripped through the England top order, posing a plea as to whether or not Bob Willis considers Umar Gul's bowling action accurate or he will make any other excuse for English defeat. Instead of praising the performance of Pakistani team including bowlers and batsmen, Bob Willis must look at the weaknesses of England team and try to learn lesson from their mistakes and remove them to face Pakistan in the second Test to avoid humiliation in the next matches.

England should acknowledge Pakistan team efforts and praise them for their good performance as cricket is the game of gentlemen to show sportsmanship for the host team.

M Hafeez and Taufeeq Umar have script the opening stand record by scoring five 100-run partnerships beating previous record of Saeed Anwar and Aamir Sohail, who scored four hundred runs partnerships for Pakistan. Undoubtedly, Pakistani team played like a unit, they went to the field with brave face and heart and utilized their natural prowess to the best of situation. The captain led the team from the front and got realised every player to play his part for the victory.

The victory is a good omen for the Pakistani team and the players must keep it up in the future as well as more tough times are still head in the series.