BIRMINGHAM: Pakistan had to manage just a day in the middle to save the game and Pakistan’s batting line failed miserably except the young opener, Sami Aslam, who scored courageous 70 runs. Pakistan got all out on 201 and lost the third test by 141 runs. England is now leading the four-match test series by 2-1.
Pakistan got a stiff target of 343 runs to win the match, which seemed too much for the Men in Green. Their motive was to survive the day at the crease and draw the game.
Mohammad Hafeez, yet again on this tour, threw away his wicket after scoring just two runs when he was caught on the deep fine leg while playing a pull off Stuart Broad.
Sami Aslam looked rock solid once again and he had a decent partnership with the ODI skipper of Pakistan, Azhar Ali. The two scored 73 runs together before a nervous Azhar Ali edged a drifter from Moeen Ali to Alastair Cook on the second slip.
It was the beginning of a disastrous end, Younis Khan failed once again on this tour, he poked an outside off delivery of James Anderson, which was easily caught by Jonny Bairstow, he fell for just 4 runs.
Pakistan collapsed drastically from 92/3 to 125/7, they lost four wickets on just 1 run on 23 deliveries.
Misbah Ul Haq scored 10 runs, whereas, Asad Shafiq and Sarfraz Ahmed did not bother scorers and got out without scoring.
Sami Aslam misjudged a delivery from Steven Finn that kissed his off stump. He played brilliantly for his 70 runs.
However, Pakistan’s tail enders showed fair bit of resistance. Although the leggie lost his wicket on just 7 runs, but, Mohammad Amir, Sohail Khan and Rahat Ali kept England’s bowlers at bay. They scored 76 runs in 19 overs.
Sohail Khan and Rahat Ali had a teasing partnership of 50 runs, which was the second highest partnership for Pakistan in the inning. Sohail Khan lost his wicket after scoring inspiring 36 runs and remained the third highest scorer for Pakistan in the inning.
It was disappointing to see that five of Pakistani batsmen got out caught behind, which means they have not learned from their mistakes.
Alastair Cook exhibited wonderful skills of captaincy as he used his pacers pretty smartly and brought his slip fielders closer as the edges were not getting carried to the slip cordons.
Apart from Sami Aslam and tail enders, none of the Pakistani batsmen showed any intention of fight, their body language was down and it seemed they have already given up.
English pacers ruled Pakistani batting, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Steven Finn, Chris Woakes and Moeen Ali got two wickets each in the fourth inning.
The only positive that Pakistan got from the match is Sami Aslam, an opener with decent technique and great temperament.
The fourth and final test of the series will be played in Oval from August 11.