Brisbane : Skipper Steve Smith and batsman Usman Khawaja struck half centuries as Australia maintained a complete strangehold over Pakistan at stumps on the third day of the opening day and night Test at the Gabba here on Saturday.
After losing openers David Warner (12) and Matt Renshaw (six), Khawaja (74) and Smith (63) joined forces and steadied their side’s innings.
The duo went on to share a crucial 111-run stand for the third wicket before declaring their second innings at 202-5.
Chasing a daunting target of 490 runs to win, Australia’s Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon took a wicket each to reduce Pakistan to 70-2 at the end of the day’s play.
Earlier, resuming at the on Friday’s score of 97-8, Pakistan were eventually bundled out for 142 runs in reply to Australia’s massive first-inning total of 429 runs.
Besides Sarfraz Ahmed (unbeaten at 59), none of the other batsmen were able to contribute much in their side’s innings.
For the home side, Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Jake Ball all bagged three wickets each.
It will now be a herculean task for Pakistan when Azhar Ali (41) and Younis Khan (0) will resume the side’s second innings on Sunday.–ANI