Azhar happy with Pakistan progress after Somerset draw

Azhar Ali is confident Pakistan is making good progress ahead of the first Test with England after its tour match with Somerset ended in a draw at Taunton.

azharali - cropped

Azhar Ali scored an unbeaten century againt Somerset.

Azhar Ali is confident Pakistan is making good progress ahead of the first Test with England after its tour match with Somerset ended in a draw at Taunton.

Azhar added 51 to his overnight score on Tuesday to reach 101 not out and was ably supported by Asad Shafiq (69no) as Pakistan declared on 236-4 in their second innings.

That gave Pakistan a lead of 467, but Somerset rallied to take a draw out of the three-day game as they finished 258-8, former England opener Marcus Trescothick (106) striking a superb hundred from 111 balls.

There were positives with the ball, though, as Yasir Shah (4-107) and Rahat Ali (2-30) provided good support to Mohammad Amir (1-42), something that Azhar feels leaves them well placed for Lord's on July 14.

"I think the bowlers supporting Amir are up for it and we have seen the other bowlers bowl well," he told ESPNcricinfo. 

"Sohail [Khan] bowled well and Rahat Ali as well, and we have two guys on the bench. So it's looking pretty good as a bowling unit.

"Everything has gone perfectly because the focus of the players, management and board really helped. 

"We are a much more improved side, but we have to put that performance on the pitch. The preparation has been perfect now we have to put that on the field."

Pakistan face a second tour match against Sussex in Hove later this week, ahead of next week's first Test in a four-match series.

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