Alastair Cook’s monumental effort in the first test match in Abu Dhabi steered the English side to push for a victory but fell short of just 25 runs to end the fifth day due to bad lights. There was a sudden shift of energy on the field as Pakistan found themselves unsteady on the last day.
England made a last inning chase of mere 99 runs as the hosts collapsed in their second inning. Shoaib Malik was instrumental in leading the way for Pakistan in the first test match scoring 245 runs along with the clinical Asad Shafiq, who also scored century declaring at 523.
The English Captain, Cook, decided to take matters in his own hands with his blistering knock of 263 in reply to Pakistan’s effort. However, the big boost for Pakistan is the return of Yasir Shah who took seven wickets in Dubai, playing his debut match exactly a year ago.
Both England and Pakistan didn’t have a good run in Dubai. With only two players from the English side managing to score past 50, Pakistan’s patchy run was evident in their defeat to South Africa and then Sri Lanka.
ESPNcricinfo reported that the pitch is likely to be receptive to both pace and spin, which means that the batting line up on either side would have to adapt themselves to the conditions accordingly. Pakistan Captain Misbah Ul Haq claimed it to be a “Typical” Dubai surface, while Cook felt that the shadow cast by the stands could help the pitch retain moisture.
The Telegraph noted that Adil Rashid has to lift up his game in the second test. There are also concerns over Ben Stokes, who is suffering from a stomach upset, and Jos Buttler, who didn’t play upto his batting standards.
The Possible Playing Eleven:
England: Alastair Cook (capt), Moeen Ali, Ian Bell, Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler (wk), Adil Rashid, Stuart Broad, Mark Wood, James Anderson
Pakistan: Shan Masood, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Younis Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq (capt), Asad Shafiq, Sarfraz Ahmed (wk), Wahab Riaz, Zulfiqar Babar, Yasir Shah, Imran Khan
Pakistan vs England
Pakistan and England in UAE, 3 Test Series, 2015, Game 2
Oct. 22-26, 0600 GMT
Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai
Live Stream: Star Sports