Greens pink-hot

Pak ready to take on struggling WI in day-night Test

Dubai : In-form Pakistan are ready to launch a pink-ball spin assault on struggling West Indies when they do battle in Asia’s first day-night Test from Thursday here.

Pakistan have been on a roll since their 2-2 series draw in England in August, which briefly lifted them to number one position in world cricket’s Test rankings for the first time.

Arch-rivals India relegated Pakistan to number two with recent victory over New Zealand but Misbah-ul-Haq’s men have a prime opportunity to close the gap in the three-match series against the West Indies and are strong favourites.

Pakistan captain Misbah said he was relishing the prospect of a day-night Test, where play will be from 3:30 pm to 10:30 pm (1130 GMT to 1830 GMT) with two breaks of 30 minutes, in what is nominally a “home” series for Pakistan.

“It’s exciting because I think the future belongs to day-night Tests,” said Misbah, whose team will be missing senior batsman Younis Khan, recovering from dengue fever.

Pakistan have included in-form batsman Babar Azam, 21, for his first Test after he racked up 360 runs during the one-day series against the West Indies.

But misfiring openers Mohammad Hafeez and Shan Masood have been axed from the squad which levelled the four-match Test series against England.

The West Indies, routed by Pakistan 3-0 in both Twenty20 and one-day series preceeding the Tests, come in as clear underdogs. Coach Phil Simmon was sacked prior to this tour after the team lost 2-0 to India.

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