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Clinical England stage comeback with innings win to level series 1-1

Discussion in 'Cricket Talk' started by Ahson8, Jun 3, 2018.

Clinical England stage comeback with innings win to level series 1-1

Discussion in 'Cricket Talk' started by Ahson8, Jun 3, 2018.

by Ahson Afzal
Jun 3, 2018 at 9:04 PM
  1. Ahson8

    Ahson8 Fantasy Draft Wins: 1

    Jun 9, 2012

    363 (Buttler 80*) beat Pakistan 174 (Shadab 56, Broad 3-38) and 134 (Bess 3-33, Broad 3-28) by an innings and 55 runs

    Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
    Live Report archive

    This is not a drill. England have won a Test match, at the ninth time of asking - and it was a handsome victory in the final analysis too. A three-day win, sealed in an extended afternoon session after a day of relentless dominance, ensured a 1-1 share of the two-match series, and postponed - at least until August and the arrival of Virat Kohli's India - the existential angst that has hung over Joe Root's team in the early weeks of the season.

    In an uplifting development for England's medium-term prospects, the day was delivered in a pleasing synthesis of old guard and new. James Anderson and Stuart Broad topped and tailed Pakistan's second innings with a share of five wickets, as they continued to rail against those who might seek to have them put out to pasture. However, it was the young guns, Dom Bess and Sam Curran, who hustled England towards their goal, as well as a notable returnee, Jos Buttler, who delivered the point-of-difference innings for which he had been selected.

    For Bess, in particular, it was an especially triumphant day. Rarely can a 20-year-old have looked quite so at home and composed at the highest level of the game, especially when he had hardly been called upon to perform the role for which he had been selected.

    And yet, Bess hasn't wasted a minute of his seven days in the Test limelight. Having made his mark with the bat - both in adversity at Lord's and in forging a position of relative authority in England's only innings here - he had time here to showcase his athleticism in the field before being finally tossed the ball for the 23rd over of Pakistan's second innings: a stunning one-handed pluck at mid-off to extract the dangerous Haris Sohail was a pretty impressive way to pass his time.

    When his spell finally began, Imam-ul-Haq greeted Bess with a fairly contemptuous smack back down the pitch - a continuation of Pakistan's rather breakneck approach to their second innings, as if they had sized up Buttler's earlier belligerence and decided that attack was the only means of defending their hard-won series lead.

    But to the bowler's immense credit, he refused to be cowed, or to desist from tossing the ball up and inviting further aggression. From the sixth ball of that very same over, he slid one into Imam's front pad, benefiting from the natural variation that can occur when you consistently target the footholes, and up went umpire Bruce Oxenford's finger to end a wait that a less ebullient character would surely have allowed to cramp his style.

    A change of ends for Bess allowed his fellow rookie (and birthday boy) Sam Curran to join the fray - and in his second over he too was in the wickets, properly this time, after his maiden Test wicket had been a first-innings slog to deep midwicket. This time, a perfect off-stump lifter to Shadab Khan, the game's only remaining teenager, was deflected to Alastair Cook at first slip, and one of Pakistan's most reliable sources of runs in their victories at Lord's and Malahide had been dispatched for just 4.

    Thereafter, it was back to Bess to make up for lost time - as Pakistan continued to bat as if running out of time. Faheem Ashraf, perfectly capable of playing the long game when it suits him, chose instead to take a slog outside off and skied a simple catch to backward point. And then Usman Salahuddin - hitherto batting with the patience of a player who has waited seven years to get his big break - was lured inexplicably into a rash swipe to mid-on.

    Bess' figures at this stage were 3 for 21 in 8.2 overs, and not even a massive first-ball mow over deep midwicket from Hasan Ali could wipe the grin from his face. Quite rightly, Joe Root trusted him to close out the contest, and to judge by the number of air shots that landed safe in the closing overs, he would surely have done so, had it not been for the old stager Broad, who docked the tail via two old-school nicks to slip in consecutive overs to wrap up a point-proving display with match figures of 6 for 66.

    That wasn't, however, the most devilish array of sixes in the day's play. That accolade was reserved for Buttler, who transcended the tricky conditions, the seeping of English wickets at the other end, and his own lack of familiarity with first-class cricket to tailor the contest to his own strengths. In essence, that involved planting his front foot, flinging his ninja-quick wrists through the line of the ball, and belting England into an invincible position before the innings had fully ebbed away.

    Having resumed on 34 overnight - Buttler duly became the first man in the innings to pass fifty, and had he been allowed to loiter for a further three overs, he might well have recorded the first century of the series to boot. His final 11 balls went for 4, 6, 1, 1, 1, 4, 4, dot, 4, 6 and 6 - 35 runs in all - but at the other end, Broad and Anderson, in this discipline at least, were unable to fulfil their sides of the bargain.

    It mattered not in the end - England are off the mark for their home summer. And Buttler, having segued seamlessly from the IPL to Test cricket in only a matter of days, seemed perfectly primed to take on Scotland and Australia in the middle-distance 50-over format. It all comes rather quickly at the moment, triumph and disaster as well.

The author is a medical student and an avid fan of Pakistan cricket.
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Discussion in 'Cricket Talk' started by Ahson8, Jun 3, 2018.

    1. chandtara

      chandtara Mr Cricistan

      Jun 18, 2011
      Wasim Akram lends support to Pakistan team despite Leeds bashing

      Legendary fast bowler Wasim Akram has come out in support of the Pakistan cricket team, saying that the fans should give the young squad some ‘time and patience’.

      “This is a young team. It needs time and patience. The youngsters should be praised for beating England in their backyard, which is a big deal. Nobody was expecting us to draw the series, as we all thought England will win the matches in three days,” said Akram, local media reported.

      The relatively inexperienced Pakistan went out to draw the series 1-1 against England. Akram, however, was of the view that the team should learn from their mistakes.

      Pointing out the positives from the tied series, Akram praised youngsters Faheem Ashraf and Shadab Khan for their all-round abilities in the series. “The duo minted runs under pressure; we were in trouble against Ireland and Lord’s as well. This is a young side and a very talented side we just have to wait,” he said.

      The former captain was of the view that Pakistan should play more than 10 to 12 Test matches in a year, as one needs to be fit both mentally and physically and need to develop strategies to come on top in this format.

      The end of the second Test came quickly on the third day at Headingley as a second innings collapse from Pakistan gave England their first Test match win since defeating West Indies at Lord’s last September

    2. chandtara

      chandtara Mr Cricistan

      Jun 18, 2011
      Where Pakistan went wrong

      After their brilliance at Lord's, Pakistan's frustrated captain and coach left Headingley wondering what might have been.
      Sarfraz Ahmed expressed his disappointment after the Headingley Test, which England won by an innings and 55 runs to square the series 1-1, that his young Pakistan side couldn’t replicate their heroics at Lord’s.

      “We won the toss and elected to bat, and that was the right decision to bat first, but unfortunately we didn’t bat well and we lost too many wickets in those first two hours.”

      Many judges said that it was a good toss to lose, considering the lateral movement on offer to England’s bowlers, but Ahmed refuted any suggestion that he should have bowled first.

      “Yeah, obviously it was tough, but it was a good batting pitch and we wanted to use it first. But we were not as disciplined as the last game. Our batting was not up to the mark.”

      Despite defeat at Leeds, Sarfraz is optimistic about the future for his team. “We have a very young side. We are going through the learning process. Every day we’re learning. The way we came back at Malahide [to beat Ireland] and the win at Lord’s, I’m very proud of my team.”

      Pakistan were bowled out in under two sessions on day one

      His points were echoed by the Pakistan coach, Mickey Arthur, who spoke afterwards to Sky Sports. “I think we’ve done a hell of a lot of good things in this series, I’m just disappointed at the final outcome. But we’re on the right track. The talent that we have in that dressing room is phenomenal.”

      Arthur conceded that consistency will always be an issue with young teams. “We’re all about trying to get this consistency right – playing in the right style and right manner. We’re incredibly disappointed, but as long as that dressing room learns from it, hopefully we can grow and grow quicker.

      “It’s a young, young dressing room. Guys are still feeling what it’s like to play tough Test cricket over a long period. There’s only four guys here who have played Test cricket in England before. But our expectation is still more. These guys know that.”

      Shadab Khan was the only Pakistani to register a half century at Headingley

      Arthur lamented how much of the good work his batsmen showed at Lord’s was undermined by their decision-making at Leeds. “What they did at Lord’s, they were patient, they committed to their defence, they committed to their attack, and they showed really good intent. We got that wrong here.

      “After winning a good toss, we had to get through a session and a half there, because they were really good batting conditions later in the day, but we could never do that.

      “The key thing for us across the series is that a number of our batters got starts but no one got a hundred. If we’re to grow as a team, someone in that top six needs to start making hundreds.”

    3. chandtara

      chandtara Mr Cricistan

      Jun 18, 2011
      Ramiz Raja laments Pakistan lost golden opportunity

      Former Pakistan captain turned cricket commentator Ramiz Raja slammed Sarfraz Ahmed’s men for their dismal showing against England at Leeds, after the young Pakistani side suffered a humiliating loss by an inning and 55 runs.

      “If Pakistan have got a draw, it would have been a big achievement as they lost a tremendous opportunity to win the Test series in England,” Raja said, in a video message on social media. The former captain said that the young side should understand that in Test cricket one has to break out of their comfort zones and show up fight if they desire to win matches.

      “It is a young team and a work in progress, it should understand that if they give up easily without putting up a fight, it will become a habit… The youngsters should understand that this is Test cricket, where you have to win sessions and needs to do stuff that is not into your system, for the pride of your country and yourselves,” he said.

      “The team should understand that the Pakistani nation loves this game and make a commitment that they would not repeat the performance in the future,” he added.

      The end of the second Test came quickly on the third day at Headingley as a second innings collapse from Pakistan gave England their first Test match win since defeating West Indies at Lord’s last September.

    4. chandtara

      chandtara Mr Cricistan

      Jun 18, 2011
      Pakistan lose, but it’s not a disgrace

      For not only the touring team but also for the hosts, a short two match Test series is never a fair deal for the fact that if both win a Test each and then if there isn’t a decider then the whole exercise is of course is nothing less than in futility which does not really make much sense to me.This is what the case is on this tour after England trounced Pakistan by an innings and 55 runs at Headingley in the second Test to level the series.

      Let us not forget though, that Pakistan, beyond anyone’s expectation, were able to strike the first blow when beating England at Lord’s by a comprehensive margin of nine wickets which indeed provided them the edge to cash on to it.

      But initial tactical mistakes combined with unconvincing batting in the first innings, Pakistan let England come on top of them to dictate with both ball and bat to come to a position of levelling the series which they did as impressively as Pakistan did in the first Test.

      The success will of course take Joe Root’s team to face India in a full five match series later in the summer in a much healthier frame of mind.

      And for Pakistan to come out of this brief English experience with the credit of drawing the series would be a kind of start to their long and busy schedule of Test and ODI’s in which they will have to build on to establish their credentials at the highest level.

      Pakistan have lost the last Test but not the series and that is where we ought to admire their combined effort on this tour which culminated with their honour intact and also with more admirers of this young team in this country and at home.

      We have got to support them because of the fact that they are in a rebuilding process with such stalwarts like Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq now retired.

      Their experience here would also keep them in good stead for the fact that in youngsters like Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Abbas and Usman Salahuddin they have at least discovered potentials to be the future stars.

      Mohammad Amir appeared to have found his touch and Hasan Ali looked as determined and aggressive as he has always been.

      What was most disappointing for me was the performance of the experienced Azhar Ali and Sarfraz Ahmed who continued to slide down the hill to leave much impression for those who had a lot more expectations from them It is now important that those in control of this team put their head together to iron out the weak links of within the batting order.

      I, for one, am not happy Azhar Ali being wasted as an opener and he would do a lot better batting down the order and with the form that Sarfraz is in, he should promote Shadab Khan above him to strengthen the late middle order.

      Like Pakistan, the English are as much uncertain of their batting line up. Except for their captain and Alistair Cook there is plenty more work to be done to face the Indians and their spinners.

      Jos Buttler, Chris Woakes and Ben Stokes have the potential to rise to the top and for them there is plenty to learn with such experienced bowlers around like James Anderson and Stuart Broad who looked different from what we saw at Lord’s.

      The bright light in the end was indeed the choice of Mohammad Abbas as the man of the series which he richly deserved for taking ten wickets in two Tests and ending the tour with 19 wickets if we add the nine wickets he took against Ireland in Pakistan’s win.

    5. chandtara

      chandtara Mr Cricistan

      Jun 18, 2011
      Miandad criticizes ‘irresponsible’ Pakistan for Headingley defeat

      Pakistani legend cricketer Javed Miandad said that Pakistan lost the Headingley Test to England because of their mistakes.“They played unnecessary shots,” Miandad said while speaking in Samaa TV program Sports Action. “Not a single Pakistani player tried to stay on the crease.”

      “The players had no objective as to how the game should be taken forward.”

      He said that the team did not think that they should stay on the crease so that time passes and the match could have been possibly saved by the rain.

      The legendary cricketer said that batting is equally important than bowling because a team needs to score runs on the board.

      “Pakistan has enough bowling attack which can win matches everytime,” he said.

    6. chandtara

      chandtara Mr Cricistan

      Jun 18, 2011
      Mickey Arthur and Pakistan’s never-ending tales of woe

      Mickey Arthur. (Photo Source: Twitter)

      ‘Cannot watch when Pakistan is batting,’ Mickey Arthur quips. He has never had this problem before. He has also coached some of the biggest teams in the world. Australia and a South African side under transition, Mick have seen it all. An establishment man, in every sense of the term, Arthur is from a long line of gritty Johannesburg folks who have lived through the recent malaise of ‘depression’.

      However, the Pakistan assignment is proving to be perhaps the most testing. As far as he is concerned, at least. Of course, there is the odd factor of not playing in front of Pakistan crowds. Maybe even in Pakistan (although that is beginning to change). He is flanked by Steve Rixon and Azhar Mahmood. The trio crouch upon their oddly-shaped seats in the haven of the Pavilion. They watch, as disaster begins to unfold in Headingley.

      Mickey Arthur however, cannot contain himself. His face turns into somewhat of an Osram. Of course, many had seen his head sink into his hands time and again. Even when Pakistan was on the ascendency.

      In Lord’s Arthur’s gloom was lifted time and again. This time around, there wouldn’t be much sunshine. There would be no smiling and no chuckling. After Stuart Broad delivers the first ball of the second Test, Mickey Arthur will have absolutely no reason to smile.

      A collapse more than apparent
      The Branderson partnership has worked well for the Brits before. It is something Joe Root has inherited as well. And he isn’t afraid to unleash it as well. But, instead of handing the ball to Anderson, Broad junior is given the red cherry. Alastair Cook, in the slips, is visibly opposed to the idea.

      Broad runs in. He has a plan. The Headingley wicket, as it always has done, offers a hint of swing. Thereby rendering the likes of Mohammad Amir and James Anderson quite obsolete. Their plans at the very least. Broad begins targeting the line just outside the off-stump and Imam-ul-Haq is in a fix.

      Imam, unlike his uncle Inzamam plays with somewhat of a straight bat. Broad prods at Imam with the off-stump line. He pitches a few deliveries up, but Imam isn’t one to fall into a trap. Not just yet, at least. The final delivery of Broad’s over begins. He runs in, as he has done a billion times previous. He pitches this one up and Imam finally acquiesces. And Joe Root claims yet another catch at third slip.

      Mick exercises surprising calm. He is unmoved. Asad Shafiq takes his place in the hot seat a few inches away from his coach. Shafiq is a calm character. Perhaps the distance is not really a telling one, but it would seem as though his calmness is rubbing off on his coach.

      ‘As long as Azhar is there, we should be fine,’ Arthur thinks to himself. A believer in youth, Mick has, on his roster a bevvy of youngsters, for much international cricket is a new experience on the rollercoaster.

      The Branderson partnership, however, is far from over. This time around, Azhar is on their list. Once again, Broad decides to over-pitch the odd delivery. And Azhar falls prey. Un-noticed to both Mahmood and Rixon, the ‘management’ has gone into a state of minute shock. Arthur’s head has finally gone into his hands. The England camp takes a quick look at Trevor Bayliss. His expression is as cold as ever.

      A few blokes in the navy blue caps take a quick glance towards the Pakistan terrace. The game was won right there.

      Shadab lifts the mood a wee bit
      As lunch looms, Salahuddin and skipper, Sarfraz make their way off. Broad has done what Root wanted and now they were sitting pretty, en route to a series-leveller. Haris Sohail and Asad Shafiq are back in the pavilion following their tales of woe.

      A few short minutes following the lunch interval, Sarfraz is castled by a peach from Jimmy Anderson. The latter has been at it all morning and finally seemed to have gotten his due. The Osram is quite clear as Mick begins to turn red. This is not with embarrassment but in anger.

      Hailing from the nasty Transvaal Province of Johannesburg, Arthur is the epitome of toughness. And he isn’t afraid to unleash it on someone he sets his sights on. This is something that has happened several times. And publicly as well.

      The 50-year old South African sat up on his seat when 19-year old SHadab Khan made his way to bat. The 19-year old was a subtle reminder of Steve Smith 10 years ago. He hoicked and whacked and even rammed the ball at times, giving debutant Sam Curran and youngster Dom Bess a run for their money.

      It was a glimmer of hope. Some resurgence. Renaissance of sorts. But the same Curran he had dispatched time and again would be his undoing. Sam Curran’s first Test wicket (before his birthday) couldn’t have been sweeter. Hasan Ali held out for a short while before Chris Woakes cleaned him up as well.

      Mohammad Amir misses his line
      Arthur’s Osram would show up yet again over the course of the next few days each time something happened. Of course, there had been a lot of harsh talk in and around the dressing room, but none more so than Mohammad Amir.

      It took the divine intervention of Wasim Akram to point out the problems with Amir. The latter makes a futile effort to get the ball to swing. It does not work as Cook brandishes him to the fence. The southpaw has only one thing to prove to the England selectors – he is the best batsman within the British Isles.

      It takes another divine intervention, this time from the duo of Faheem and Shadab who had no choice but to bring an end to the England innings. Pakistan’s second innings is a disaster. Something beyond belief and prompts the management to head back to the drawing board. This time, unlike Imam-ul-Haq’s selection, it is far from a joke.

      A reflection; Mick vents
      It has taken less than three days for an annihilation. Pakistan cricket is back where many claim it is supposed to be. Moreover, for the South African Arthur, it is a quiet pitch. He cannot hide this time. The tour has not exactly been a disaster, but the second Test seems to be almost like a Test match lost.

      “It was a poor display from us coming off such a high at Lord’s as we are all about getting our consistency right and trying to play in the right style,” Arthur was quoted as saying by Sky Sports.

      “We’ll talk about it, we’ll have a hard discussion – we need to dish out a couple of hidings! But they are gutted and if they learn from this, hopefully, they can grow and grow quicker,” he added.

      Where he goes, and more importantly, Pakistan cricket goes, remains to be seen.

    7. chandtara

      chandtara Mr Cricistan

      Jun 18, 2011
      Ajmal believes Pakistan ‘could’ve done better’ in second Test against England

      KARACHI: Legendary off-spinner Saeed Ajmal was not at all happy with what he saw on show in the second Test between Pakistan and England at Headingley and has expressed his dissatisfaction at the way the visitors collapsed.

      The Men in Green suffered a humiliating innings and 55-run defeat against the Three Lions in the second Test — which levelled the series 1-1 — and Ajmal, who represented Pakistan in 35 Tests where he claimed 178 wickets, said that the players know exactly where they went wrong and that the performance was not at all satisfactory.

      “They know where they did badly and where they did well,” said Ajmal. “But overall their performance was not satisfactory and they could have done better.”

      Pakistan went into the series with a relatively young squad, and Ajmal believes the players should ask ex-cricketers for advice to excel in the future.

      “Pakistan have a huge number of former players and the current players should follow them and learn from them,” he said. “They have to set their priorities that who they want to follow and what they want to learn from them. All former players are open to give the required tips and training to the players but all depends on what they want to learn from whom and what are their priorities.”

      Following the dismal show in Leeds, captain Sarfraz Ahmed and coach Mickey Arthur criticised the team’s batting performance in the second innings, however, Ajmal believes it was the first innings which let the visitors down.

      “They only talked about the second innings that if they had a less lead then they would have done better,” he said. “But in all fairness they should’ve talked about the first innings where Pakistan did extremely poor and let themselves down.”

      Talking about the performance of young leg-spinner Shadab Khan, Ajmal said that a top-class spinner does not focus on what other players are doing; instead they focus on the job at hand.

      “The coach said that Shadab was bowling well until Ali dropped the catch off his delivery, but I think as a spinner we have to stay focused and keep on trying to hit the weak areas of the batsman even if we are conceding boundaries and catches are being dropped,” he said. “When a catch is dropped off your ball, it does demotivate you but that is the time when you show that you are an international bowler by overcoming that period and doing everything you can to trouble the batsman. You can’t let them take advantage of that.”

      Salahuddin was pleasure to watch: Yousuf

      Former captain Muhammad Yousuf praised debutant middle-order batsman Usman Salahuddin for his fighting 33 in the second innings.

      Yousuf, who represented Pakistan in 90 Tests, passed those remarks about Salahuddin while talking to The Express Tribune.

      “Usman Sallauddin played well, he was seen standing firm on the crease and playing shots,” said Yousuf. “He managed the different pitched balls brilliantly and that was something great to watch. He was coming on to the ball and looked really composed. He was more defensive due to the position of the team and the conditions, but he was much better than the ones who were being bowled on straighter deliveries.”


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