England need 55 runs to win the third Test against Pakistan, and complete a series sweep, after 18-year-old legspinner Rehan Ahmed took 5-48 on the third day in Karachi.
The teenager replaced Pat Cummins in the record books as the youngest men’s Test cricketer to claim a five-wicket haul on debut. The current Australian captain was 18 years and 193 days old when he took five against South Africa in 2011, 65 days older than Ahmed.
“I was thinking about the five-fer. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t. But at the same time I was trying to forget it. The more you try and chase the wicket, it just won’t happen. It was nice to get a legspin wicket.
“When I started bowling legspin I could only bowl googly so my legspin has been a work on.”
Ahmed, who delivered the best figures by an England leg-spinner since 1959, said of the somewhat premature comparisons with Australian great Shane Warne being made, I’m working on a few things but i can’t say I’m as good as him just yet.”
Ahmed’s haul came after Jack Leach (3-72) claimed three wickets in the space of six deliveries as Pakistan crumbled to 216 all out on Monday.
That left England needing 167 runs for victory.
Ben Duckett (50 no) and Zak Crawley (41) immediately set about knocking off the target with an 87-run opening stand compiled inside 12 overs.
Ahmed, promoted to No.3 to have a swing, then made ten in eight balls before being bowled leaving skipper Ben Stokes (10no) to take England to 2-112 at the close.
England won the first two Tests by 74 and 26 runs respectively, on flat and slow turning pitches with an aggressive brand of Test cricket in their first tour of Pakistan in 17 years.
Resuming in the morning at 0-21, 29 runs adrift, Pakistan were ahead by three runs when the top order crashed against Leach on a wicket where spinners have dominated. Shan Masood (24) and Abdullah Shafique (26) were dismissed either side of a disappointing end to his Test career for Azhar Ali who was bowled for a duck.
Captain Babar Azam (54) hit his third half century in the last four innings and Saud Shakeel (53) made his fourth fifty in his debut series to rebuild Pakistan’s hopes with a 110-run stand.
But both fell late in the second session to Ahmed, who added Mohammad Rizwan (7) to leave Pakistan 6-177 at tea.
Ahmed, Mark Wood and Joe Root cleaned up the tail as Pakistan, staring at a first ever 3-0 whitewash at home, lost the last seven wickets for 52 runs.
Holy Dooley, Bumrah impersonation works
What began as a Christmas Day backyard cricket experiment has turned into breakout Big Bash League success for rookie Hobart Hurricanes spinner Paddy Dooley.
The 25-year-old weaved a spell of swirling-arm magic to inspire the Hurricanes to an against-the-odds eight-run victory over the Perth Scorchers in Launceston on Monday night.
Playing just his third BBL game, Dooley picked up 4-16 from four overs as his side defended 8-172.
The left-armer, who revealed his unique action was inspired by Indian quick Jasprit Bumrah, bowled a crucial 16th over that turned the game.
With Perth needing 36 runs from 30 balls, Dooley removed set batter Josh Inglis (62 from 37), had Ashton Agar stumped for a duck and conceded just two runs.
Dooley earlier had two scalps in his first spell, bowling South Africa veteran Faf du Plessis (32 from 16) and trapping Nick Hobson in front.
Dooley, whose figures were comfortably career-best, nominated the wicket of du Plessis as his favourite.
“Looking at the pre-game footage, we knew he was going to try and back away and try to hit me over cover,” he told Fox Cricket.
“When I saw him do that I got a bit scared, but he missed it. That one went well.”
Dooley said he had always bowled by flicking the ball out but his action was a more recent development.
“Four years ago when India were out (touring Australia), I was just in the backyard on Christmas Day practicing some Jasprit Bumrahs,” he said.
“It kind of worked with my rhythm so I just went with it and it goes alright now.
“If it distracts the batters when they first see me, it’s an added bonus.”
After Dooley’s sweet 16th, Hurricanes spinner Shadab Khan picked up Aaron Hardie in the penultimate over with a leaping caught-and-bowled.
Perth needed 14 runs off the final over, bowled by quick Nathan Ellis, but it proved a bridge too far.
The win breaks the Hurricanes’ five-game losing streak against Perth. Both sides are 1-1 to start the season.
Earlier, a half-century from Matthew Wade and some late swinging by Tim David headlined the Hurricanes’ innings.
Wade got his team off to a brisk start with 51 from 29 balls before Hobart wobbled in the middle overs, losing 5-18.
David weathered the storm and freed his arms at the death, hitting some much-needed boundaries in an unbeaten 46 from 28 deliveries.
Wade was in the middle on the second ball of the innings after Ben McDermott copped a Jason Behrendorff inswinger and was trapped lbw for a golden duck.
D’Arcy Short stepped up in his absence with 35 from 25 before becoming Tye’s second victim to a sharp low catch in the deep by Behrendorff.
Short had an ordinary night in the field, grassing two catches, including Inglis in the 30s.
Perth quick Jhye Richardson finished with 3-26 from four overs, including the scalps of imports Khan and James Neesham in the 13th over during the power surge.