England vs Pakistan, Test 1, Day 4: England gained an incredible three-wicket win over Pakistan in the first Test of the three-match series


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England have started the series with a win, unlike the WI series. Losing the first match of a series for away team is always very dangerous as it can break team morally and when you loose from a very strong position it does affect badly and how much this defeat’s impact would be in Pakistan team it will be seen in few days. At the start of the day they were hoping for 20-30 runs and they got 32 in 16 balls before their innings folded at 169, giving England a target of 277.

Pitch was not having any demons but some balls of Bess did bounce awkwardly on the third day so Pakistan had to be patient with their plan and had to believe that they can defend the target. England openers were quite sure in their way of handling opening spell of Pakistan. Abbas was again on the money a d did bat 5-6 times but could not induce an edge. Pakistan fit managed to take the first wicket that of Rory Burns in 12th over. Joe Root joined Sibley and added 64 patient runs to take their team to a position of strength.

Pakistan was playing on their patience and was rewarded when Sibley was caught at the slip of Yasir. The second wicket fall at 86 and gave an opening to Pakistan. Suddenly there was a spring in their step and within the next 6 overs, England from 86/2 were reduced to 117/5. Stokes and Pope got deliveries which bounced of good length. Pitch was still behaving the same with oddball or two misbehaving.

Woakes and Buttler then started counter-attacking as they knew playing patiently were playing into Pakistan hands. They started finding boundaries, raced to 50 run stands at run a ball and didn’t stop there and continued their aggressive way of playing. Pakistan were not bowling that badly and as the ball had softened up there was no assistance for their bowlers. The partnership of 139 in 32 overs can be judged by the fact that both batsmen didn’t play out a single maiden.

By the time Buttler fell 21 runs were needed. Broad and Woakes hit a boundary apiece to bring the target down to 4 before Broad fell to Yasir Shah. But the Kate wickets were mere consolation as Woakes hit the winning runs to have England a 1-0 lead. Woakes was deservingly given the man if match. Many will say Pakistan didn’t bat well in their second innings or should have batted wisely but still, they had a good 4th innings score to defend it’s just that when their bowling was put under the coach they did not have a plan to counter.

Now it will be more difficult for Pakistan to defeat England as now the home team have the belief that they can come back from any position. Pakistan unpredictability can win then the next test but it can have it’s negative effect as well. It looks more exhilarating stuff is in store for all of us.