Pakistan Vs England Day 1 Review:
Babar Azam struck a familiar unbeaten 50 runs as Pakistan shut a downpour shorted first day of the primary Test Pakistan Vs England on 139 for two at a melancholy and wet Old Trafford on Wednesday.
Babar (69 not out) indicated all his ability and class to climate an early tempest from the England bowlers, and wrestle away the activity alongside the more quiet opener Shan Masood (46 not out).
England were magnificent before lunch, heading into the stretch with Pakistan on 53 for two, however wayward and lukewarm after the break as the sightseers heaped on 68 runs in 16.1 overs before downpour brought an early tea.
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The players returned late in the day for 7.5 overs, however terrible light implied England needed to bowl spinners Dom Bess and Joe Root, and Pakistan had the option to see off their danger.
The nearest the home side went to a wicket was a puzzling possibility for Jos Buttler against Shan off Bess, however the ricochet of the ball escaped the wicketkeeper and the left-hander endure.
Quick bowler Jofra Archer took the main wicket in the innings, bowling Abid Ali (16) with a conveyance that touched back and burst through the hole among bat and cushion after a conditional nudge from the batsman.
Seamer Chris Woakes then asserted the huge scalp of visiting skipper Azhar Ali, caught leg before wicket for a duck, which left the guests wavering at 43 for two as the ball whistled about in the misery.
However they couldn’t pound home that advantage, rather losing their line, length and power in a limp post-lunch meeting as Babar and Shan included an unbeaten 96 for the subsequent wicket.
Pakistan had won the toss and chose for bat, with England skipper Root conceding he would have done likewise, confident of using a wearing wicket late in the game that is relied upon to take turn.
It is therefore they have chosen a couple of leg-spinners in Shadab Khan and Yasir Shah, yet will need to give them something to bowl at by building a sizeable first innings all out.