Nottingham [UK]: Pakistan broke their 11-match losing streak in One-Day International cricket as they defeated England by 14 runs after registering their highest ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup score of 348 runs at Trent Bridge on Monday.
Chasing a mammoth total, England got off to the worst possible start as they lost their opener Jason Roy cheaply for eight in the third over off Shadab Khan. The right-hander took a review after getting adjudged leg-before, however, the replays clearly showed the batsman got plum in front.
Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root put a brief 48-run partnership but their resistance was cut short when Wahab Riaz dismissed Bairstow (32). Skipper Eoin Morgan (9) also failed to leave a mark as he got clean bowled by Mohammad Hafeez, leaving England at 86/3.
Root and Ben Stokes added a 32-run stand but England’s hero from the previous match, Stokes (13) was sent back to the pavilion by Shoaib Malik. Having required 230 runs with almost half the overs gone, England’s line-up was under pressure.
Jos Buttler joined Root and started playing aggressive cricket immediately, giving the much-needed impetus to the England innings. The duo combined a 130-run partnership, which saw Root raising his bat and kissing his helmet to celebrate his century off 97 balls. Root became the first player to score a ton in the ongoing World Cup.
Shortly, Shadab ended the wonderful innings of the right-hander for 107.
Buttler, too, brought up his century in 75 balls, silencing cheerful Pakistan supporters. However, Mohammad Amir tilted the match and forced Pakistan spectators to resume their celebration when he fooled Buttler (103) with an off-cutter.
Buttler top-edged which landed safely in the hands of short third man Wahab. The asking run-rate proved too much for England tail-enders, and a flurry of wickets was the final nail in the coffin.
Earlier, fifties from Hafeez, Babar Azam, and Sarfaraz Ahmed powered Pakistan to post 348/8 after being put to bat first. This was the highest total recorded by a team without an individual scoring a century.
Moeen was the pick of English bowlers, having returned with figures of 3-50. Pakistan replaced Imad Wasim and Haris Sohail with Asif Ali and Shoaib, respectively, after their defeat at the hands of West Indies.
Imam-ul-Haq and Fakhar Zaman got off to a brilliant start, combining 82 for the opening wicket. The duo looked confident and settled in with regular boundaries. Unable to get a breakthrough, England looked furious and lost the review pretty early to Imam, who got inside edge off Jofar Archer.
England breathed a sigh of relief as Fakhar got stumped for 36. Then, Woakes ran the best part of 20 yards to take a diving catch to his left that sent Imam (44) back to pavilion off Moeen, leaving Pakistan at 111/2 in 20.1 overs.
Babar and Hafeez carried the momentum set by the openers and stitched a well-compiled 88-run stand. Moeen struck again, getting Babar (63) to play in the air and Woakes ran in from long-on and caught him diving forward.
Pakistan crossed the 250-run mark courtesy 80-run partnership between Hafeez and captain Sarfaraz. Within four overs, Mark Wood got rid of top-scorer Hafeez (84) and Asif Ali (14) to reduce the ticking of the scoreboard.
The last five overs saw Pakistan tail adding 51 runs but lost four more wickets along the way – including Sarfaraz (55) and Wahab (4) in the gap of two balls off Woakes. Woakes returned in the last over and he bagged his third wicket in Shoaib (8). Hasan Ali and Shadab remained unbeaten on 10 each.
Woakes’ four catches helped him in equalling the record for the most catches taken by an outfielder in a World Cup match. India’s Mohammad Kaif, Bangladesh’s Soumya Sarkar and Pakistan’s Umar Akmal are the three others who have achieved this feat. Woakes also became the first fielder to take four catches in an ODI for England.
Pakistan will next take on Sri Lanka on June 7 at Bristol County Ground, while England will meet Bangladesh on June 8 at Cardiff Wales Stadium.
Brief scores: Pakistan 348/8 (Mohammad Hafeez 84, Babar Azam 63, Moeen Ali 3-50, Chris Woakes 3-71) beat England 334/9 (Joe Root 107, Jos Buttler 103, Wahab Riaz 3-82, Shadab Khan 2-63) by 14 runs.