Misbah-ul-Haq
Can Pakistan clinch the Boxing Day Test? Reuters

Match: Australia v Pakistan, 2nd Test

Date: 26 December, Monday to 30 December, Friday

Time: 7:30am SGT/5am IST/11:30pm GMT (Sunday)

Venue: Melbourne Cricket Ground

TV Channel: In Singapore, Star Cricket will provide live TV coverage.

Live streaming: Sky Go, Hotstar

Overview

Pakistan fell short of 39 runs in Brisbane and thus missed a chance to script one of the best comeback stories in Test cricket.

In reply to Australia's first innings score of 429, Pakistan could only manage 142 runs and were in danger of following on. However, the hosts decided against enforcing one and went on to set a target of 490 for the visitors.

Misbah-ul-Haq's men came close, thanks to Asad Shafiq's fighting fourth innings ton but it was not enough to seal a win in Brisbane. However, Pakistan will be high on confidence when they head to Melbourne for the big Boxing Day clash.

The visitors should make sure they do not get alarmed by the huge crowd, a possible 60,000 people, on the opening day if they are to make a solid start in the contest. Not a lot from the current playing XI know what it takes to be in a Boxing Day environment.

However, two of Pakistan's four wins in Australia have come at the MCG, where batting becomes a lot easier with every passing day of the Test. Misbah and his men will be looking to capitalise on the conditions as the second of the three-match Test series is now a must-win for them.

Mohammad Amir, who suffered a niggle in Brisbane, is expected to be fit for the second Test. A lot will depend on him and Wahab Riaz as they have it in them to pick 20 Australian wickets.

On the other hand, Steve Smith would want to get a series win under his belt after they were thrashed back-to-back by Sri Lanka and South Africa. The skipper himself has been in good form and lead the batting unit from the front in Brisbane. The likes of David Warner and Peter Handscomb will want to make the most of the conditions in Melbourne.

All eyes are on Australian quicks, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood, who might have signs of fatigue after having bowled 56 overs each in Brisbane.

TV Schedule

India: Star Sports

Australia: Channel 9

Pakistan: PTV Sports

UK: BT Sport

Sri Lanka: TNL TV

US: Willow TV

Middle East: OSN Sports

Team News

Australia

Possible XI: Renshaw, Warner, Khawaja, Smith (C), Handscomb, Maddinson, Wade (wk), Starc, Hazlewood, Lyon, Bird

Pakistan

Possible XI: Aslam, Ali, Azam, Younis, Misbah (c), Shaiq, Sarfraz (wk), Amir, Wahab, Yasir, Rahat