2016 England-Pakistan Series: Pakistan came from 2-1 down to level series 2-2

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 29: Misbah-ul-Haq of Pakistan waits for play to resume on the field during day four of the Second Test match between Australia and Pakistan at Melbourne Cricket Ground on December 29, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)

From AZ Aamir

After a humiliating 3-1 drubbing on England tour in 2010 which also marred in the end by Lord’s Test spot-fixing scandal, Pakistan visited England in 2016 under the leadership of Misbah-ul-Haq for the four-match Test Series which ended in a 2-2 draw.

In the first Test at Lord’s Pakistan defeated England by 75 runs to take a fine start. Misbah (114) and Asad Shafiq (73) enabled Pakistan to post 339 all out in their first innings. Chris Woakes claimed 6-70. England, in response, were skittled out for 272, conceding 67 runs lead. Skipper Alastair Cook belted 81 and Joe Root made 48. Leggie Yasir Shah claimed 6-72.
Pakistan then perished for 215 in their second innings to set a target of 283 for England. Asad Shafiq (49) and stumper Sarfraz Ahmad (45) left some impact with the willow. Chris Woakes got 5-32, for excellent match-haul of 11-104. Stuart Broad claimed 3-38. England, chasing a tricky target, were dismissed for 207 with Yasir taking 4-69, for match figures of 10-141 that also earned for him man of the match award. James Bairstow (48), Gary Balance (43) and James Vince (42) were the prominent contributors.

Meanwhile in the second Test at Manchester England made a strong fightback when they whipped Pakistan by 330 runs to level the series 1-1. Joe Root hammered 254 and Alastair Cook chipped in with 105 to catapult England to 589-8 declared in their second innings. Wahab Riaz claimed three wickets while Mohammad Amir and Rahat Ali clinched two wickets each.
Pakistan, in response, perished for 198 but England did not force the visitors to follow-on and rather batted again. Misbah made 52 while Shan Masood and Wahab Riaz belted 39 each. Chris Woakes got 4-67. Cook (76) and Root (71) then enabled England to declare their second innings at 173-1 to set a target of 565 for Pakistan. Pakistan were bundled out for 234 to lose the show by a huge margin. Mohammad Hafeez scored 42 and Asad Shafiq made 39. James Anderson, Moin Ali and Chris Woakes claimed three wickets each. Joe Root was declared man of the match.

In the third Test at Birmingham England overwhelmed Pakistan by 141 runs to gain 2-1 lead in the series. Ballamce (70) and Moin Ali (63) guided England to 297 all out in their first innings. Sohail Khan was the pick of the bowlers with 5-96. In response Azhar Ali (139), Sami Aslam (82) and Misbah (56) took Pakistan to 400 to secure 103 runs lead. Broad and Woakes got three wickets each.
England then declared their second innings at 445-6 to set a target of 343 for Pakistan to chase. Moin Ali (86*), stumper Bairstow (83), Cook (66), Root (62) and Alex Hales (54) batted superbly. Mohammad Amir, Sohail Khan and Yasir Shah claimed two wickets each. Chasing a tough target Pakistan were folded for 201 in their second innings with Sami Aslam leaving some impression with 70. Anderson, Broad, Woakes, Finn and Moeen Ali got two wickets each. Moeen Ali was adjudged as man of the match for his excellent allround show.

After going 2-1 down Pakistan staged a stunning comeback when they whipped England by ten wickets at The Oval to level the series 2-2. Moeen Ali blasted 108 to enable England post 328 all out in their first innings. Sohail Khan got 5-68.
In response, Pakistan rode on the heroics of Younis Khan (218) and Asad Shafiq (109) to pile-up 542 to gain a huge lead of 214. Finn and Woakes got three wickets each. England then perished for 253 in their second innings to set just 40 to win for Pakistan who chased it down in the 14th over without loss. Bairstow once again batted well, scoring 81 and Root making 39. Yasir Shah, who remained wicketless in the first innings, got 5-71 in 29 overs. Younis was declared as man of the match. Woakes and Misbah were adjudged as players of the series.

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