The much-awaited, England vs Pakistan Series began with the first Test match in Manchester on Wednesday. The visitors won the toss and opted to bat, the decision which surprised many. Pakistan went in with two leg spinners in Yasir Shah and Shadab Khan. The hosts, on the other end, retained the same eleven from their previous Test.
Just like during the West Indies series, the rain played spoilsport once again. On Day 1, only 49 overs of play was possible. This was due to constant showers time and again which caused various delays. However, Pakistan would be happy as they definitely finished ahead of the English side. At 139/2, they have a solid base and would be looking to maximize it on Day 2.
Shan Masood and Abid Ali walked out to open the innings for the Pakistan side. For England, it was the legendary duo of Stuart Broad and James Anderson which began proceedings. They did find initial movement and bowled some good deliveries but were unable to get any wickets.
Shan Masood and Babar Azam shine on Day 1
Jofra Archer dismissed Abid Ali on the first ball of his second over. He bowled a beautiful delivery which went straight through the batsman’s defenses. From 36/1, the visitors soon lost their captain Azhar Ali for a duck. Chris Woakes bowled s beautiful inswinger to trap the experienced batsman.
Babar Azam walked in to bat next. This was definitely going to be the most important partnership for Pakistan. He received a peach of a delivery from Chris Woakes first up, which luckily missed the edge of his bat. After the first couple of wickets, England got no more success and also leaked runs.
Babar and Masood have stitched a 96-run unbeaten partnership with the former playing some sumptuous shots. The English line-up had no answers to their phenomenal batting which led Pakistan to a successful opening day. Babar is unbeaten on 69 while Masood is building his innings slowly with an unbeaten 152-ball 46.
England will need to strike early and somehow restrict the tourists from crossing the 300-run mark which is a benchmark these days in Tests especially in the UK.
Here’s how Twitter reacted:
— Azhar Mahmood (@AzharMahmood11) August 5, 2020
2 off spinners bowling … 2 Batsman on 50 ish each … and we go off for bad light … Test Cricket is bloody bonkers … #ENGvPAK
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) August 5, 2020
“There is nothing better than a Babar Azam cover drive..” apt by Nasser Hussain
— zainab abbas (@ZAbbasOfficial) August 5, 2020
— Vikrant Gupta (@vikrantgupta73) August 5, 2020
🇵🇰 Babar Azam's last five Test knocks 👀
— The Cricketer (@TheCricketerMag) August 5, 2020
"If this lad was Virat Kohli, everyone would be talking about it but because it is Babar Azam, no one is talking about it. He's young, he's elegant, he's got all the swagger. They keep going on about the fab four, it's the fab five and Babar Azam is in that."
– Naseer Hussain
— Faizan Lakhani (@faizanlakhani) August 5, 2020
Early in his career, he burst onto the scene as an incredible white ball batsman.
The criticism levelled at him was that he was vunerable at Test level.
In the last two years he's honed his technique and looks every bit an elite Test batsman.
— bet365 (@bet365) August 5, 2020
There hasn't been a more attractive Pakistani batsman than Babar Azam since Mohammad Yousuf, and before him, Zaheer Abbas
— Sambit Bal (@sambitbal) August 5, 2020
Babar Azam (111.16) is the only batsman with an average over 100 in ICC World Test Championship. #EngvPak
— Mazher Arshad (@MazherArshad) August 5, 2020
— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) August 5, 2020
Wasim Akram feels Babar Azam should be put in the same bracket as Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, Kane Williamson and Joe Root.
— Faizan Lakhani (@faizanlakhani) August 5, 2020
Wait is over, I witness some beautiful and classical batting of a very classy batsman of modern era, Pakistani Run Machine, the Classy Babar#BabarAzam #PAKvENG
1st test Aug, 2020 pic.twitter.com/bsxujxQVfe
— Abdullah Bin Waqas Khan (@AbdullahBinWaq2) August 6, 2020
— Akshay Tajane (@CricketWorship1) August 6, 2020
Class, patience and control . #BabarAzam
— Raza Ali Shah (@RazaAlle) August 6, 2020
Source: The source of this content is our cricket news platform Crictracker.
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