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Saeed Ajmal takes seven as England manage just 192

Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal took a career-best seven wicket haul to destroy England's much vaunted batting line-up on the opening day of the first Test yesterday.


Saeed Ajmal celebrates the wicket of James Anderson

The 34-year-old, whose claims of a mystery delivery surrounded the lead-up to the three-Test series, had figures of 7-55 which left England 192 all out on a slow turning pitch at the Dubai Stadium.

In reply, Pakistan finished on 42-0, with openers Mohammad Hafeez (22) and Taufiq Umar (18) unbeaten. Ajmal, whose previous best of 6-42 came against the West Indies at Guyana last year, bowled with variety, unleashing a straight delivery bowled with a round-arm action that kept low, seemingly his mystery one that he named 'teesra' (the third one).

Only wicket-keeper batsman Matt Prior batted with defiance -- 70 not out. Ajmal said he tried the mystery delivery but hasn't perfected it. "I tried it but have still not mastered it. I hope I will perfect that in the next two to three innings."

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