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Recent Match Report – England vs Pakistan 2nd Test 2022/23




Pakistan 202 (Babar 75, Shakeel 63, Leach 4-98) and 64 for 0 (Shafique 34*, Rizwan 28*) need another 291 runs to beat England 281 (Duckett 63, Pope 60, Abrar 7-114) and 275 (Brook 108, Abrar 4-120)

Harry Brook marched through to the second century of his fast-developing Test career, to set Pakistan an imposing 355 for victory in the second Test, but by lunch on the fourth day, the chase was on, as Mohammad Rizwan and Abdullah Shafique started brightly in their bid for an unlikely series-levelling win.
After being promoted to open in the absence of Imam-ul-Haq, who has been sent for a scan on a suspected hamstring tear, Rizwan’s presence applied an extra degree of urgency to Pakistan’s batting, as he and Shafique picked off five fours and two sixes in 15 overs before the break, the first a clean drive from Shafique back over Jack Leach’s head, the latter a more chancy top-edge over fine leg off the pace of Mark Wood.

Wood did think he’d made the breakthrough in his first over, too, but on 25, Rizwan successfully reviewed an on-field lbw after inside-edging a pull onto his pads.

It was the continuation of a free-flowing morning of batting, on a pitch that – to judge by England’s earlier efforts – had slowed up over the course of the match, with less extravagant spin than on the first days in particular. As at Rawalpindi, where Ben Stokes’ declaration of 342 had kept Pakistan in the hunt and so aided England’s quest for wickets, England’s approach was an indication that they believed their lead was ample to force the win.

After resuming on 202 for 5, a lead of 281, England added 73 runs in 15.5 overs, and just over an hour’s play, with Brook converting his overnight 74 to his second hundred in four innings on this trip. By the time he holed out to deep square leg for 108, Brook had racked up 14 fours and a six in his 149-ball stay, replete with powerful strokeplay and impressive judgement of length, particularly against the spin of Abrar Ahmed, who was once again Pakistan’s most threatening bowler, as he finished with 4 for 120, and an 11-wicket match haul on debut.

England took a few overs to gauge the pace of the surface, and it wasn’t until Stokes skipped down the track to Mohammad Ali in the fourth over of the morning that England picked off the day’s first boundary. That was the presage to a flurry of boundaries in the subsequent overs, with Brook climbing into Abrar’s offerings with a series of drags to the leg-side, and Stokes launched the same bowler over the straight boundary for six, to draw him level with his coach Brendon McCullum on 107 Test sixes, the most by any player.

Before he could convert that start into anything more meaningful, however, Stokes got underneath a heave to leg, where Ali on the midwicket boundary ran round for a well-judged catch. Ollie Robinson didn’t hang around, missing a slog to leg as Abrar skidded a googly through his gate for his 11th wicket, before Wood poked a fast legbreak from Zahid Mahmood to slip.

Brook, by now, had cracked Mohammad Nawaz through midwicket to reach his hundred, but he holed out soon afterwards, before James Anderson missed a reverse sweep to wrap up the innings.