Warner, Burns get Australia to 100-0 at lunch, day 2

BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — Australian openers David Warner and Joe Burns ensured it was a tough test match initiation for 16-year-old Naseem Shah, combining in an unbeaten partnership to get the home team to 100 without loss at lunch on day two against Pakistan.

Warner reached his 31st test half century, and first since August, with a single on the first ball of Naseem’s second spell on Friday morning as the Australians scored at four runs per over in pursuit of Pakistan’s first-innings total of 240.

Burns turned him for two in the last over before lunch to bring up Australia’s 100. It was a major contrast to the first session of day one of the series-opening test, when Pakistan labored to 57 without loss after winning the toss and batting.

At the interval Friday, Warner was unbeaten on 52 and Burns was on 41, facing one ball before the break after being hit hard on the left elbow by a Naseem short ball.

Warner was coming off a poor Ashes series with the bat, when he had only one half-century and only two scores in double-figures, but he averages more than 60 at the Gabba and had posted 21 centuries in his 79 test matches ahead of this series.

The 30-year-old Burns, averaging 40 in 16 tests, is playing on his home ground.

The inexperienced Pakistan pace bowlers struggled to get their lengths right on the bouncy Gabba pitch and, despite some ducking, weaving and swaying under short balls, the Australian batsmen were easily able to exploit it.

Naseem is the youngest player to make his test debut in Australia, and he got his first taste at the elite level on day one when he had to survive a hat-trick ball from Mitchell Starc. He managed to do that, squeezing an inside edge away to leg-side, but was the last man out for seven.

With the ball in hand, what he was picked for, he showed plenty of pace in his opening spell after entering the attack in the seventh over, reaching speeds of 148 kph (92 mph) but not forcing any false strokes from Warner or Burns, who combined for 10 boundaries in the session.

Naseem’s first spell returned 0-19 from four overs and his burst before lunch took his figures to 0-24 from six.


More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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