Canterbury: Heavy overnight and early morning rain meant play on the third day of Pakistan’s tour opener against Kent at Canterbury was abandoned without a ball bowled on Monday. It was the second successive day in this four-day fixture where play had been completely washed out.
But whereas the umpires waited until lunch on Sunday before calling off play, the amount of rain taken by the Spitfire St Lawrence ground on Monday meant that this time they abandoned proceedings for the day at 9am — two hours before the scheduled start.
Kent are 39 for one in reply to Pakistan’s first innings 168, a total in which Imam-ul-Haq’s 61 was the top score.
Uncapped at Test level, Imam’s inclusion in the tour squad generated debate because the 22-year-old left-hander is the nephew of Pakistan chief selector and former international batsman Inzamam-ul-Haq.
But there was no denying Imam’s talent or application as he struck nine fours in a 111-ball innings played in typically English overcast and swing-friendly conditions that favoured the bowlers, with medium-pacer Will Gidman taking five for 47.
Kent were one for one in reply when Hasan Ali, one of the stars of Pakistan’s one-day Champions Trophy tournament win in Britain last year, had Daniel Bell-Drummond lbw.
But Sean Dickson 24 not out and Kent captain Joe Denly 12 not out saw the hosts through to Saturday’s close without further loss.
After this match, Pakistan face Northamptonshire before providing the opposition for Ireland’s inaugural Test, in Malahide, from May 11-15.
Pakistan then recross the Irish Sea for a two-Test series against England at Lord’s (May 24-28) and Headingley (June 1-5).