England defeat Pakistan in first Test after thrilling finish

The visitors won by 74 runs

By Web Desk
December 05, 2022
England players celebrate after picking up a wicket — AFP

England have defeated Pakistan by 74 runs in the first Test after a thrilling finish on the fifth and final day in Rawalpindi. 

England bowled out Pakistan for 268 runs in the second innings to clinch victory. 

Pakistan began the fifth and final day on 80-2 after being set a target of 343 for victory, but Ollie Robinson and James Anderson took four wickets apiece to dash the home team´s hopes.

Robinson, who claimed five wickets, bagged the award for Player of the Match.

“The pitch was not favourable but we got it going. I'm just proud of every single man. We knew it would be hard but we just toiled away. Batters gave us the opportunity scoring as quickly as they did. Playing on Pakistan on these tough wickets — probably the best Test match I've had,” said Robinson during the post-match presentation ceremony. 

Pakistan fought gamely before being all out in the absorbing final session, with Saud Shakeel top-scoring for them with 76.

The Ben Stokes-led unit lead the three-match series 1-0. 

On a flat pitch it seemed that the match was heading towards a draw but a smart declaration by England captain Stokes and a spirited bowling effort in the second innings led the visitors to victory. 

With a total of 1768 runs, this was the highest-scoring five-day Test match in history. Only two timeless Tests in the 1930s had more runs scored.

England are on their first Test tour of Pakistan since 2005, having declined to visit in the interim years on security grounds.

It must be noted that England plundered runs on a lifeless wicket in Rawalpindi in the first innings. The visitors were finally all out for 657 — including a record 506 from the first day Thursday — with four batsmen scoring centuries off the hapless Pakistan bowling.

In reply, three Pakistan batter scored centuries as the home side posted 579 in their first innings.

In the second innings, England batted a run-rate of over seven to set Pakistan a daunting target of 343 runs.

The second Test is in Multan from December 9-13, and the third in Karachi from December 17-21.