Marsh-Smith duo backs Aussies on 2nd Innings at Melbourne Test

Steve Smith and Mitchell Marsh
Pakistan tour of Australia 2023 (image; CA)

Mitchell Marsh and Steve Smith dug in to help Australia recover from 4/16 during the second innings at the Melbourne Test.

Marsh-Smith duo backs Aussies on 2nd Innings

The all-rounder Mitchell Marsh and middle-order batter Steve Smith helped their side to recover from early dismissal during the second innings in the second test of Pakistan’s Australia tour.

The Boxing Day test came into balance after Pakistan bowlers dominated the field with their swing to collapse Australia’s top order epically. Afridi dismissed Usman Khawaja and Marnus Labuschagne while Hamza bagged the wickets of Warner and Travis Head.

By the 2nd ball of the sixth over, the Aussies lost 4 wickets by the intense bowling attacks from Shaheen Afridi and Mir Hamza. Their bowling could have caused havoc on the hosts.

However, Mitchell Marsh and Steve Smith led the hosts to 4- 115 runs where the former scored 63* runs before the lunch break.

Hamza was on a hat-trick after he dismissed Warner for 6 and Travis Head for a duck in consecutive balls to restrict Australia to 4/16.

David Warner was cheered by the MCG crowd after departing the arena which was his final Test innings at the Melbourne ground ahead of his retirement following final test in Sydney.

Shafique missed an opportunity to get off Marsh when Australia was 4/46 which is an expensive wicket that could have helped Pakistan to create disaster on the ground.

“This was a big, big opportunity … this might be the difference between winning and losing this game,” Pakistan legend Waqar Younis said in commentary.

“Pakistan fought so, so hard through all of this match and that catch might cost them this match.”

Pakistan showed more resistance after starting their third day in Melbourne Test where they started with 194/6 and were dismissed for 264.

Cummins had support from star spinner Nathan Lyon who has the fifth most Test scalps and awaits to enter 500-wicket club during the first Test in Perth. The fast-bowling skipper has raced to 247 career scalps from 57 Test.