Sydney - Australia were nine wickets away from a series
clean sweep and Pakistan an improbable 410 runs from victory with one day left
in the third Test in Sydney on Friday.
Spinner Nathan Lyon grabbed the wicket of debutant opener
Sharjeel Khan for 40, caught at mid-wicket, nearing stumps to have Pakistan at
55 for one.
At the close, Pakistan's leading series scorer Azhar Ali was
not out 11 with night-watchman Yasir Shah on three.
Skipper Steve Smith called a halt to Australia's second
innings at 241 for two with 16 overs left on the fourth day and the tourists
facing the herculean task of scoring 465 for victory.
Usman Khawaja was left unbeaten on 79 off 98 balls and Peter
Handscomb was on 40 off 25 balls. Handscomb finished with a series average of
Smith was out in a review after 'Hot Spot' detected a faint
edge off his glove and was caught behind off Yasir for 59 off 43 balls to
finish the series with 441 runs at 110.25.
David Warner smashed the second fastest 50 in Test history
to give Australia a flying start in their chase for runs and a declaration.
The explosive Warner smashed leg-spinner Yasir for six, six,
four, four in the fourth over of the innings, and then clouted Imran Khan for
four consecutive boundaries in the seventh over.
His breathless half-century came off 23 balls with seven
fours and three sixes and was the second fastest in Test history after Pakistan
skipper Misbah-ul-Haq's 21 balls against Australia in Abu Dhabi in 2014.
But Warner perished when he missed in a lusty swing and was
bowled by Wahab Riaz for 55 off 27 balls.
Younis Khan was left unconquered on 175 as Pakistan lost
their last two wickets in an hour's play post-lunch after rain washed out the
Younis was dropped on 141 by wicketkeeper Matthew Wade, who
got his right glove to the chance but could not cling on, much to bowler
Mitchell Starc's annoyance.
Wade was forced off during Thursday's play with a stomach
illness but returned to the game on Friday.
Yasir gave Smith his ninth catch of the series when he was
picked up in the slips off Josh Hazlewood for 10 before Imran Khan was bowled
two balls later for a duck.
Younis remained unbeaten off 334 balls with 17 fours and
three sixes, and was given a big ovation from the SCG crowd as he left the
ground after his 34th Test century.
The tourists on 315 finished 223 runs in arrears, but
skipper Smith did not enforce the follow-on.
He sought to give his bowlers a rest and let his batsmen put
more wear into the SCG pitch for a fourth innings push for victory over the
concluding sessions of play.
Hazlewood finished with four wickets for 55 and spinner
Nathan Lyon captured three for 115.
Paceman Mohammad Amir injured a left-side muscle and did not
bowl in Australia's second innings.