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Test 1: Stokes gives England hope after Yasir shines for Pakistan | Cricket News


MANCHESTER (UK): Ben Stokes took two late wickets to help drag England into the first Test against Pakistan at Old Trafford on Friday.
Pakistan, on top for most of this match, was 137-8 in its second inning on stumps on the third day, a 244-run lead.
Stokes, who did not pitch in Test 3 against the West Indies at Old Trafford last month due to a quadriceps injury, won 2-11 on 20 balls.
He struck with just his eighth installment of the match when he had Mohammad Rizwan lbw for 27 on the referee’s call.
And the pacemaker hit again before the stumps when he had Tailender Shaheen Afridi caught fending off a short ball.
But leg shooter Yasir Shah, who had previously taken four wickets, was still there on the stumps of 12, not out.
Pakistan was still relatively well placed.
Only twice has a team chased more than 200 to win in the fourth inning of a Test at Old Trafford, with England going 294-4 against New Zealand in 2008 and 231-3 against the West Indies at Manchester in 2004.
England were also trying to end a streak of losing the first test in each of their last five series, with eight of their last 10 first matches ending in defeat.
However, there were still two days of play left, albeit on a worn field where Yasir previously took 4-66, including three of four on 27 balls, as England were sent off for 219 in response to Pakistan’s first innings 326.
But Pakistan’s Shan Masood, who hit nearly eight hours for a best 156 in the test in the first inning, was knocked out when he was caught in the leg by a poor pitch from Stuart Broad.
Fit man Chris Woakes cut Pakistan to 63-4, with Babar Azam well caught in Stokes’ slips before Pakistan captain Azhar Ali went for a duck in the first inning, shedding 18 pounds.
Goalkeeper Rizwan, much more impressive behind the stumps than his England counterpart Jos Buttler, hit well in a 38 association with Asad Shafiq, until Shafiq was knocked out by Dom Sibley’s direct hit.
England resumed on Friday at 92-4, representing an improvement from their terrible 12-3 position on Thursday.
Ollie Pope didn’t come out and Buttler 15 didn’t.
Buttler, with just 100 of his previous 44 tests, was under pressure to score runs after costly mistakes behind stumps.
He dropped Masood at 45 and then missed an opportunity to stump him on the same scoreboard, mistakes that intensified the debate over whether the World Cup winner should remain England’s glove.
Pope completed a fifty composed of 81 balls.
But there was little he could do when, at 62, a pitch from Naseem Shah went down a long way to catch the shoulder of his bat and headed for Shadab Khan in a ravine.
England suffered a further collapse after lunch, losing their last five wickets for 60 runs in 18.3 overs, a sequence that began when Yasir pitched Buttler between bat and pad for 38.

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