Cricket: England fight back to defeat Pakistan
By Jake Goodwill
- England fought back from a dangerous position to win the match.
- A well rounded team performance with contributions from all the players secured England victory.
- Pakistan’s collapse on the last day denies them chance to win the series.
EDGBASTON, UK – England battle back to take the lead in the Test Series with visitors Pakistan, before the final test at Lord’s.
Alastair Cook (c) 7/10 – Cook’s good form continued and although he will be disappointed not to have converted two promising positions into a hundred, his runs were vital. The Captain’s decision surrounding declaration worked as well despite fears it was over-cautious.
Alex Hales 6/10 – A stoic second innings performance from Hales was crucial to getting England back into the game. His opening stand of 126 with Cook allowed England to put the pressure back on to Pakistan from a precarious position.
Joe Root 6/10 – Root played nicely for his 62 in the second innings but fell for 3 in the first. A solid performance.
James Vince 6/10 – A match that epitomised Vince’s Test career. Twice he got starts and looked set to get to a maiden half-century but both times he fell just short. Vince clearly has the talent but is failing to convert. The match at the Oval could be defining for Vince’s Test Match career.
Gary Ballance 7/10 – Ballance top scored with 70 in a mediocre first innings from England. The Yorkshire-man has the knack of scoring important runs although he still needs a century to cement his place.
Jonny Bairstow (wk) 7/10 – Bairstow, alongside Moeen Ali, put England into a commanding lead allowing England to eliminate a Pakistan win as an option as they put on an 152 run partnership. Another impressive innings from the wicket keeper batsman.
Moeen Ali 8/10 – The Man of the Match scored crucial runs in both innings. Ali scored 63 and 86 not out in the match and undoubtedly thrives batting at 7 rather than number 8. He also bowled well in the second innings taking two wickets whilst toiling away at one end.
Chris Woakes 7/10 – Another five wickets for Woakes. His ability to take wickets continues to impress and he even got a run out as well. A shoo-in for Man of the Series.
Stuart Broad 7/10 – Broad has failed to hit his stride during this series but still has managed to take vital wickets including five more at Edgbaston. He will be eager to put in a big performance at the Oval.
Steven Finn 7/10 – Finn had been unlucky not to pick up a wicket during the series with a number of catches going down off his bowling. He bowled well without any reward in the first innings and then got some reward with two important wickets as Pakistan collapsed. The wicket of Sami Aslam was especially important.
James Anderson 7/10 – A performance that will be remembered for Anderson being stopped from bowling by the umpires for running on the pitch. That aside, Anderson bowled nicely in conditions that did not suit him. The little bit of reverse swing that appeared in the second innings was crucial to England bowling out Pakistan.
Mohammad Hafeez 3/10 – A 0 and a 2 merit a low score but the ridiculous nature of his second dismissal earns Hafeez an especially low rating. He pulled a ball straight to fine leg in a situation when Pakistan were batting for a draw. Mindless play.
Sami Aslam 8/10 – The 20 year old played brilliantly in his first test in England. He scored 82 and 70 in the match showing resilience that more experienced players lacked. A great effort.
Azhar Ali 8/10 – Ali had an excellent match scoring the only hundred of the match. He put Pakistan into a commanding position and was unfortunate not to be Man of the Match.
Younus Khan 5/10 – Younus once again struggled and questions surrounding retirement loom for the 38 year old. His dismissal in the second innings was particularly disappointing as he played at a ball that he did not need to.
Misbah-ul-Haq (c) 6/10 – The Pakistan captain scored 50 in the first innings playing in a controlled manner. However his captaincy lacked imagination as England piled on the runs in their second innings.
Asad Shafiq 4/10 – A pair for Shafiq. A poor performance from a player who has looked good throughout the series.
Sarfraz Ahmed (wk) 6/10 – Sarfraz played well in the first innings but was ultimately part of the collapse that cost Pakistan the match. He seems to struggle in backs against the wall situations.
Mohammad Amir 7/10 – Amir once again bowled well with control. He has the ability to take the wickets of batsman who are seemingly set at the crease, which is invaluable.
Rahat Ali 6/10 – A mediocre performance by Ali who was the worst of the Pakistan seam bowlers. He was not particularly threatening throughout.
Yasir Shah 5/10 – Another performance from Shah that lacked any danger. England’s batsman looked comfortable against the leg-spinner. Admittedly conditions were not especially conducive to spin and Pakistan will be hoping for a pitch with more turn at the Oval.
Sohail Khan 7/10 – Sohail bowled brilliantly in the first innings taking five wickets. He bowled with great accuracy drawing the England top order in to driving. However he tired rapidly throughout the match and could not replicate the energy or quality of his first innings performance.