England vs Pakistan Day One Summary
A rain affected England vs Pakistan day one came to an end just after 6 PM UK time.
Following the England Test teams 2-1 series victory over West Indies, comes the arguably sterner test of a series with Pakistan. On day one of the first Test, the hosts endured a difficult start on a frustrating opening day thwarted by rain and bad light at Emirates Old Trafford.
After winning the toss, Pakistan captain Azhar Ali opted to bat. Perhaps learning from Windies skipper Jason Holder before him, who twice chose to field only to lose the match.
Archer and Woakes Nip Out Two Wickets Early
Opener Abid Ali was the first wicket to fall in difficult conditions, a beautiful delivery from Jofra Archer that just nipped back through the gate to bowl Ali for 16. This brought the captain himself to the crease. However, he fell shortly after. Trapped in front by Chris Woakes LBW, the batsman reviewed but was proved incorrect and had to go.
Babar Azam and Shan Masood Shine
This brought the talented Babar Azam to the middle to join the watchful Shan Masood. The pair putting on almost 100 in between breaks for rain, closing on 139-2 with 41 overs lost in the day to rain and bad light.
The visitors had been 43-2 before Azam stroked a classy unbeaten 69 in partnership with opener Masood, who is 46 not out overnight. Shan Masood played really well and finally showed signs that he can make big scores. In South Africa in 2018/19, he scored over 200 runs in 3 tests but failed to capitalise on good starts. Can he make big scores on this tour?
Bad Light Stops Play – England v Pakistan Day One
After the longest delay of the day play resumed, although, after a chat between the umpires and Joe Root, England could only use their spinners due to the quality of the light.
Better weather is forecast for the next three days in Manchester, as Pakistan, having built a solid platform will look to post an imposing first-innings total, allowing their leg-spinning duo, Yasir Shah, and Shadab Khan, assistance on a pitch that has shown signs of turn already, and is likely to increase as the match wears on.
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For England, skipper Root will hope for more consistency from his bowling attack, who after lunch, in particular, allowed Azam to score freely. Meanwhile, Pakistan will be hoping to post a score in excess of 300. This will perhaps allow their strong but relatively inexperienced bowling attack some leeway when bowling to the English batsmen.
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