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Tuesday, 9 November, 1999, 15:11 GMT
Aussie win welcomes Waugh junior

Akram says Shoaib Akhtar willbe back to his best in time for the 2nd Test
Three wickets in seven balls from Damien Fleming gave Australia a convincing 10-wicket victory over Pakistan - and allowed skipper Steve Waugh to make an early exit to be at the birth of his second child.

It was one of Australia's best performances of recent times and gave Waugh his first domestic Test victory as captain.

Pakistan lost their final six wickets for 58 runs to crash to 281 all out and establish a lead of only 73 runs.

Australian openers, Greg Blewett and man-of-the-match Michael Slater polished them off in 56 minutes.

The speed of the victory allowed Waugh to make a hasty exit to Sydney where his wife is having a baby.

First ball breakthrough

The Pakistanis were cruising when they resumed their innings on the final day at 223 for four but Shane Warne struck with the first ball to spark an astonishing collapse in Brisbane.

He and Glenn McGrath helped Fleming finish off the rest, the later ending the innings with 5-95 off 14.1 overs.

It was his second haul of five wickets in a Test following his 5-46 against England in Perth last summer.

In his most devastating spell he took three wickets with seven balls, including the important scalp of Pakistan's skipper for 28 with a magnificent delivery on the first ball after drinks.

He had taken four wickets in the first innings and now has a creditable 53 wickets in 14 tests.

Warne signalled the collapse with the first ball of the last day. He fooled Abdur Razzaq into spooning a full toss which was easily caught by Ricky Ponting as the wickets began to tumble.

Two down

Century-maker Saeed Anwar only added one run to his overnight score to be caught behind by Adam Gilchrist off McGrath for 119 on the half-hour.

Gilchrist, making his Test debut as Ian Healy's replacement, then made a snappy leg-side stumping of Azhar Mahmood off Warne for a duck.

Akram joined Moin Khan and took his side to 273 for seven.

But Fleming took the vital wicket with a splendid swinging delivery that ripped out Akram's off stump.

Moin Khan, who blazed 61 in the first innings, was brilliantly caught by a diving Scott Muller at fine leg off Fleming for 17.

And then Fleming mopped up the innings when he bowled Shoaib Akhtar for five.

Pakistan now need to win the second Test at Hobart's Bellerive Oval to keep the series alive until the third and final Test in Perth.

Despite such a convincing defeat, Akram was not dispirited.

He paid tribute to some worthy batting performances, notably from opener Saeed Anwar, who starred with 61 and 119, fifth man Yousuf Youhana's 95 and 75 and Inzamam-ul-Haq's who reached 88 in the first innings.

Akram was critical of Akhtar's bowling but expects his attack to be in far better shape for the November 18 Test in Hobart.

Akram: 'Ring rusty'

Not least because off-spinner Saqlain Mushtaq is also expected to be fit again distinct improvement in the team's fielding and bowling.

"We haven't played a Test match for the last six to seven months and in this Test it showed that we looked rusty in fielding.

"Players weren't used to fielding all day and we will definitely improve a lot as a team," he said.

"Akhtar didn't bowl that well, mainly because of a lack of bowling practice, but in the first innings he bowled 30 overs and that will help him.

"Mushtaq Ahmed didn't have a good game, but Saqlain Mushtaq will be fit for the next game so he'll come back into the side.

"We've done it before and we can do it again.

"We have a good enough side and I can assure you we are going to look a lot better side in the next Test match in Hobart."

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