Yasir Shah calimed a fifer in the first innings © Getty Images
Yasir Shah calimed a fifer in the first innings © Getty Images

How often do we see a veteran cricketer, or a bowler flying in the air to cup a catch? Well, it is rare, and when it comes to a team like Pakistan, it is an oddity. Pakistan have never been a side who inspire confidence with their fielding. In fact, over the years, they have been one of the worst fielding sides in world cricket. But the second ever Day-Night Test between Pakistan and West Indies in the UAE saw some extra-ordinary fielding by the hosts. Yasir Shah’s fielding was astonishing while Misbah-ul-Haq corroborated the belief that age is just a number. LIVE CRICKET SCORECARD: Pakistan vs West Indies, 1st Test at Dubai

The first Test went down the wire, with Pakistan winning the nail-biting encounter by 56 runs after West Indies returned from the dead riding on Devendra Bishoo’s stellar performance. Bishoo recorded his finest performance in Test cricket with figures of 8 for 49, which were also the fifth-best figures by a West Indian in an innings in the history of Test cricket. His stellar performance helped his side dismantle Pakistan for a mere score of 123 in the second innings and opened the game for both the sides. West Indies now had a target of 346 runs to be chased with a session and a day left.

West Indies had a mountain to climb in front of them as Pakistan had a formidable bowling attack and have done well in the recent times. Confronting Yasir Shah on a fifth day wicket is always a valiant task and Darren Bravo was certainly having other ideas as he came out fighting. Despite losing wickets at the other end, Bravo stood at the other end like a rock and was unhindered due to external pressure,. He showed hawk-like attention and was as alert as a deer. He realised his need to bide time against the new ball and did everything right on a difficult surface.

Bravo was playing a marathon innings and was battling it hard to carry his team over the line. As long as he was out there in the middle, every West Indies fan knew the match was in their hands. But Yasir did something out of the box to pull curtains on his innings. Bravo was playing on 116 and had already faced 248 deliveries, which contained 10 boundaries and six. In those 248 deliveries, which he faced, he hardly put a foot wrong and did not lose his wicket. And it was evident that Pakistan had to do something unusual to scalp his wicket.

West Indies needed 83 more runs to win with a well-set Bravo and Jason Holder at the crease, when Yasir was putting in the hard yards. The match at this position looked in the visitors’ hands as Bravo was engineering the run chase and was doing a commendable job with the bat. He was dedicated and the level of determination was on a different level. Pakistan were running out of options and needed a breakthrough. On the final delivery of the 95th over, Yasir bowled his stock delivery, which is a leg-spinner and invited Bravo to drive. The southpaw went for it without getting to the pitch of the ball and unfortunately his bat twisted in his hands. The ball went flying towards the left of Yasir, who in no time went flying to it and cupped it with both the hands. The whole stadium including his teammates was stunned by this valour effort as Bravo dejectedly walked towards the pavilion.

It was a beautiful delivery from Yasir, and more importantly some incredible athleticism for a player of his age. This was probably the final nail in the coffin as a victory for Pakistan was just a matter of time. Yasir earned accolades for his efforts and Bravo was hailed for his magnificent resistance. Moments later, Misbah-ul-Haq exhibited fantastic fitness by running out Miguel Cummins while fielding at covers. He caught the ball and charged towards the stumps to help his side inch a step closer towards a splendid victory.

Pakistan eventually won the game as West Indies fell short by 56 runs. Without a doubt, this catch by Yasir will go down as one of the best by a bowler in the history book as it virtually ended West Indies’ hopes of winning the Test.