It was the same old story for Pakistan once again, their fast bowlers ripped apart the top order before poor catching and undisciplined bowling later in the day washed off all the good work and then losing an opener early in reply. Pakistan was 3/1 at the end of day’s play in reply of England’s 328 runs in the first inning.
Pakistani openers, Sami Aslam and Azhar Ali had to negotiate just four overs, but, the misery continued. Aslam was trapped in front of the wickets by Stuart Broad in the second over of the inning and Pakistan. The hero of the previous game scored just 3 runs. Pakistan sent in Yasir Shah as a nighwatchman. Both Azhar Ali and Yasir Shah are batting on nought.
Alastair Cook won the toss and elected to bat first, after a good start, England lost three quick wickets, Alastair Cook, Joe Root and James Vince lost their wickets adding just five runs in total. Cook got out after scoring 35 runs at a total of 69, whereas, Root and Vince added just 1 and 8 runs respectively. England was struggling at 74/4.
The first session of the day surely belonged to the visitors. However, it was once again butter fingers of Pakistan’s fielder and some careless act from bowlers that wasted all the good work.
Pakistan crushed England to 110/5, but, it was yet again the pair of Jonny Bairstow and Moeen Ali that changed the things into their team’s favour.
Earli in their inning, Moeen Ali was dropped by Azhar Ali in the slip cordon off Mohammad Amir and Jonny Bairstow was out caught on a no-ball of Wahab Riaz. But, as it is said, luck favors the brave and it was the case there.
Bairstow and Ali dominated Pakistani bowling with complete authority afterwards for their partnership of 93 runs. Bairstow got out after scoring 55 runs when Sarfraz Ahmed finally caught one on Amir’s delivery.
Losing his partner, Moeen Ali wasn’t bothered at all as he was joined by Chris Woakes, who carried on his fine touch with the bat. He had a handy partnership of 79 runs with Ali. Sohail Khan removed Woakes when was on batting on 45,
Stuart Broad and Steven Finn could not show much of a resistance, but, it was Moeen Ali’s single handed assault that bruised Pakistan. He scored a tremendous century batting under pressure. He was almost flawless on his day. He got out after scoring 108 runs.
Sohail Khan got another five wicket-hall on this tour, his figures were 66/5 in 20.4 overs, Wahab Riaz got three and Amir struck twice in the inning.
Pakistan was too sloppy with the ball as they leaked 30 extra runs, which can be extremely crucial in the outcome of the game.
Pakistan had two changes in the team, Iftikhar Ahmed and Wahab Riaz were brought in place of struggling Mohammad Hafeez and Rahat Ali. Iftikhar, who was initially included in the squad to give Misbah an extra bowling option, bowled just two overs out of 76.4 overs Pakistan bowled.