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Australia registered their 10th consecutive win over Pakistan at home © Getty Images

The first Test of the 3-match series between Pakistan and Australia was probably the most thrilling match of the year. It was played at Brisbane Cricket Ground, where Australia have the best win/loss ratio (4.625). Batting first, Australia scored 429. Pakistan collapsed horrendously in response, for 142. After gaining a huge lead of 287 runs, Australia did not enforce follow-on and decided to bat again. They made 202 for 5 and set Pakistan 490. Had Pakistan pulled it off, it would have been a world-record chase. After the poor batting display in first innings, Pakistan were expected to get bowled out soon but they fought back. At one point it looked like the chase was possible.

Asad Shafiq probably played the knock of his career by scoring an excellent 137. He was dismissed just when Pakistan needed 41 to win with 2 wickets in hand. Soon after his departure, soon Pakistan lost their last wicket as well. Australia registered a 39-run win. They now lead the series 1-0. From this exciting contest, we present some interesting statistical highlights from this Test.

This is Australia’s 374th win in Tests, 232nd at home, 37th at The Gabba, 29th against Pakistan and 9th under Steven Smith’s captaincy.

Pakistan’s score of 450 is the 2nd-highest 4th-innings team total in a losing cause by any team after New Zealand’s 451 against England in 2001-02. This is also the joint 3rd-highest total by any team in 4th innings irrespective of result. South Africa had scored 450 for 7 against India in 2013-14. The highest 4th-innings total is by England, who had scored 654 for 5 against South Africa in the famous timeless Test of 1938-39, followed by New Zealand’s 451.

The win/loss ratio of 4.625 at The Gabba is the best for Australia among all venues with at least 10 matches. Overall, this is the 6th best win/loss ratio for any team at a venue with 10 or more matches, and the best for any team on a venue with 50 or more Tests.

Pakistan lost this Test by 39 runs, the 2nd-lowest margin of defeat for any team while chasing above 400. New Zealand holds the record (they lost by 38 runs while chasing 478 against England in 1973).

Shafiq’s 137 is the highest by a Pakistan batsman in the 4th innings in a losing cause. Shafiq went past Asif Iqbal’s 135 against West Indies in 1976-77. Shafiq’s 137 is also the 3rd-highest by a Pakistani batsman in the 4th innings in a result-producing Test after Younis Khan’s 171* vs Sri Lanka in 2015 and Inzamam-ul-Haq’s 138* vs Bangladesh in 2003. Overall, the innings is the 5th-highest score from a Pakistani player in the 4th innings. The other four are: Younis’s 171* (mentioned above), Saleem Malik’s 155 vs Sri Lanka in 1996-97, Shoaib Malik’s 148* vs Sri Lanka in 2005-06 and Inzamam’s 138* (mentioned above).

This was the 85th instance of Australia setting their opposition the target of 400 or more. England are at second spot in the list (55). This is also the 9th time Australia set the target of above 400 against Pakistan, the most by any team against them. No other teams have done that even 6 times. South Africa, second in the list, have done that 5 times so far against Pakistan.

Pakistan batted 145 overs in the final innings, the most faced by them in the 4th innings of a Test. India are the only other Asian team to have face more overs in the 4th innings of a match (145.1 overs vs England in 1959).

This was the 1st instance were 7th, 8th and 9th wicket partnerships all amounted to above 50 in the 4th innings. Overall, this is 6th such instance irrespective across innings. The last such occurrence happened in 2005, by New Zealand against Zimbabwe.

The partnership of 71 runs between Shafiq and Yasir Shah is the highest 9th-wicket stand for Pakistan in 4th innings. Overall, this is the 10th-highest 9th-wicket partnership in the 4th innings after:

Batsmen

Stand

Team

Against

Season

Tich Freeman

Frank Woolley

128

England

Australia

1924-25

John Gleeson

Rod Marsh

104

Australia

England

1972

Harbhajan Singh

Irfan Pathan

89

India

Australia

2004-05

Vanburn Holder

Clive Lloyd

88

West Indies

Australia

1975-76

Mark Boucher

Fanie de Villiers

86

South Africa

Pakistan

1997-98

VVS Laxman

Ishant Sharma

81

India

Australia

2009-10

Paul Reiffel

Shane Warne

74

Australia

England

1993

Lasith Malinga

Kumar Sangakkara

74

Sri Lanka

Australia

2007-08

Stuart Clark

Mitchell Johnson

73

Australia

India

2007-08

This was Shafiq’s 9th Test ton, the most at No. 6. Shafiq went past Garry Sobers’s tally of 8.

Pakistan’s 450 is the highest total by a visiting team in Australia in the 4th innings. Pakistan went past India’s total of 445 in 1977-78. Pakistan also became the 1st team to touch 400-run mark in the 4th innings at The Gabba, going past the England’s 370 in 2006-07.

Shafiq’s batting average of 47.30 in the 4th innings is the 4th-highest among all Pakistani players with at least 450 runs. The top spot in the list is held by Younis, whose average is 55.42 in the 4th innings. Younis’s average in the 4th innings is the 3rd best among all cricketers with at least 1,000 runs after Geoffrey Boycott (1,234 runs at 58.76) and Sunil Gavaskar (1,398 runs at 58.25).

Pakistan had 8 partnerships of 20 runs or above in the final innings, the most in the 4th innings of a Test. Pakistan are also the second team do so after India did in 1977-78 against Australia.

9 out of 11 Pakistani batsmen scored in double digits in the final innings, a record for them in the 4th innings of a Test. Their previous best was 7.

So far, there have been 4 day-and-night Tests and all 4 have produced results. Similarly, the first four day Tests also produced results, while the fifth one had ended in a draw.

Smith’s batting average of 91.68 is the 2nd best by any batsman in the first innings among players who have at least 1,000 runs. Smith has scored 2,292 runs at 91.68, while the top spot holder in the list — Don Bradman, had scored 2,387 at 113.66.

The 230 added by Pakistan after the fall of 6th wicket are the most runs added by any team’s last 4 wickets in the 4th innings. The previous record was of 227 by India against England at Lord’s in 2002.

Mohammad Aamer’s 4 for 97 in the first innings are his best since his return to international cricket. He had scalped three 3-wicket hauls after his return.

Smith and Peter Handscomb both scored hundreds in the first innings. This is the 18th such instance of two Australian players scoring tons in the same innings against Pakistan. The previous such instance came in 2009-10 by Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke.

At 42, Misbah became the 3rd-oldest touring captain to lead a Test in Australia after WG Grace (in 1891-92) and Wally Hammond (in 1946-47), both of whom were 43. Misbah also became the 8th-oldest tourist to play a Test in Australia after James Southerton (49), Jack Hobbs (46), Bert Strudwick (45), Grace (43), Hammond (43), Wilfred Rhodes (43) and Herbie Taylor (42).

Pakistan lost 6 wickets (3rd to 8th) for just 24 runs in their first innings, their worst in a Test innings. Their previous worst in the list was of 25 runs against Australia in 1981-82.

Aamer (48) and Yasir (33) both registered their career-best scores in the 4th innings, while Shafiq equalled his highest score. In the first innings Handscomb had registered his highest score as well.