Arjun Bhalla ∙ Dec 5 2022, 12:11 PM

PAK vs ENG: Brave Bazball plummet Pakistan on dull Rawalpindi track


image-lbarswehEngland after the win over Pakistan [PC: AP Newseoom]

Test cricket got a newly-tinted approach as a Kung-ho England team outclassed Pakistan in their own backyard. 

Under Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum, England not just batted the home team out of the contest but on a dusky Pindi pitch, their bowlers used reverse swing as a weapon to produce a win out of an unlikely situation. 

On the last day, Pakistan had to score 263 runs with eight remaining. That might have been tricky against a frail Pakistan lineup and they made a meal out of it. 

Imam ul Haq and Saud Shakeel - the overnight batters - had a task in their hands of laying a strong foundation for the day. However, the former was removed within the first 20 minutes of the day. 


Shakeel retaliate before Anderson-Robinson pounded

Then came Mohammad Rizwan, who alongside Shakeel, not only calmed the dugout but revived Pakistan from a spot of bother. The duo added 87 runs and played out the first session, but just like Iman, Rizwan was sent as soon as the new session began.

Azhar Ali, who got retired hurt after two balls earlier in the innings, returned to the crease and played a vital partnership - giving Pakistan hope to win the Test. But just when things were looking solid for them, a semi-fit Azhar went back to the hut when he whipped an in-swinger to leg slip. 

The next man in was Salman Agha also came to play a solid part for his 30 off 64 deliveries, but he too could not handle the reverse-swinging delivery. Till the time the debutant Shakeel was batting, the home team was cruising but his soft dismissal almost banked it in the visitors' favour.

On a dead and unresponsive Rawalpindi deck, James Anderson used the older ball to his advantage and picked four wickets in his long spell. England's fine-ageing wine was greatly supported by Ollie Robinson, who also picked the same number of wickets. 

The last nail in the coffin was thumped by Jack Leach who broke the 53-ball-long last-wicket stand as the Stokes-McCullum led boys sealed a famous win on Pakistan soil after 22 years. 


Brief Scores (2nd innings)

Pakistan: 268-10 (96.3)

Saud Shakeel 76 (159), Imam-ul-Haq 48 (77)

James Anderson 4-36 (24), Ollie Robinson 4-50 (22)

England won by 74 runs.


Also Read: Shafali Verma to lead India in the U-19 Women's T20 World Cup, squad announced