Two wicket-taking spells helped England slam the brakes on a rampant Pakistani batting line up and help set up a mouthwatering last two days of the first test in Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium.
On the third day of the first Test match between Pakistan and England in Rawalpindi, batsman continued to make the most of a flat and slow pitch.
Pakistan resumed their innings at 181 runs. Just as it helped England on the first day, Pakistan amassed 499-7 by the end of the day. At least three Pakistani batsmen smashed centuries including opening pair Abdullah Shafique and Imamul Haq, and Captain Babar Azam.
After Crawley and Ben Duckett put on 233 for the visitors in the first innings, Pakistan’s 225-run opening stand was the first time in Test history that two 200-plus opening partnerships were scored in the same match.
Unlike England, however, Pakistani batsman couldn’t keep a firmer grip on its wickets and lost around seven of them.
England took three wickets in the morning session and four in the afternoon.
This included Shafique for 114, Haq for 122, and Azhar Ali for 27.
But after lunch, Pakistan finally regained some solidity and hung on tightly to their remaining wickets as the piled on the runs.
Skipper Azam emerged as an anchor for the Pakistani innings, with his century spurring Pakistan to within touching distance of England’s first innings score.
England’s massive total of 657 runs in their first innings has put the Green Shirts under immense pressure.
Unless England manage to grab some early wickets at the beginning of play in the morning, they will not have sufficient time to post a good, defensible total against Pakistan to clinch the first test.