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21 November 2019 00:41

With Pakistan batting first, we'll get a good idea early how competitive this series will be.

steve smith

LIVE: Australia vs Pakistan First Test, day one at the Gabba

With Pakistan batting first, we'll get a good idea early how competitive this series will be. Pakistan's batsmen have usually struggled in Australian conditions due to the extra bounce here, and tracks don't get bouncier than the Gabba. Opener Azhar Ali, however, is an experienced player with a double century next to his name in this country, albeit on an MCG featherbed. He will need to dig in for the visitors. This is an important series for Pakistan's batting star Babar Azam, who has dominated in the limited-overs formats but that has not translated into the Test arena.

free battle

I'm expecting it to be tough going for Pakistan against Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc on a first-day Gabba pitch.