x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 January 2018

No thrills but plenty of spills for luckless Kamran

The suspect Pakistan wicketkeeper puts in another jittery performance to leave his bowlers frustrated, writes Ahmed Rizvi.

Midway through the second session of the day, as Mohammed Aamer continually beat the outside edge, Kamran Akmal, the Pakistan wicketkeeper, became the centrepiece of a conversation between the two television commentators. "He has got a pair of gloves that have got springs in them," said David Lloyd, the former England coach.

"Rather, he seems to have bricks in them," Rameez Raja, the former Pakistan opener, added. Those remarks came after yet another spill by the glove man, off a regulation leave by the batsman, and both commentators did have a little chuckle at the embarrassing slip. The Pakistan bowlers, however, could be pardoned for failing to see the funny side of it, especially Aamer and Danish Kaneria who suffered most.

Aamer should have got Andrew Strauss, who was on 15 at that point, in the fifth over of the day with a superb delivery that moved away from the batsman. The bowler had already started his celebration, before stopping in his tracks as the wicketkeeper grassed a catch that most schoolboys would have gratefully accepted. Aamer did not despair. He maintained his intensity and was rewarded for his persistence three overs later. He cramped Alastair Cook on the off-stump and the edge went to Imran Farhat at first slip.