Thursday Aug 06, 2020
England, in response to Pakistan's 1st innings total of 326, had a rough start on day 2 of the opening Test as they lost both their openers early.
Rory Burns and Dom Sibley were both trapped lbw - the former by Shaheen Afridi and latter by his new ball partner Mohammad Abbas.
With just 12 runs on board, England's two best batsmen Joe Root and Ben Stokes were called upon to stabilise the ship.
Abbas castled Stokes for a duck with a beauty to completely wreck English top order.
Root and Ollie Pope survived the Pakistani onslaught and carried England past their 50.
Their exactly 50-run stand was broken by Yasir Shah, who had Root caught behind by Rizwan.
Pope and Jos Buttler batted with great care for the remainder of the evening and saw England finish the day at 92-4.
Earlier, Pakistan were dealt an early blow on day two of the first Test at Old Trafford as Babar Azam departed in the very first over, getting caught in first slip by Joe Root off the bowling of James Anderson.
Azam, who had looked in sublime touch the prior day, failed to add to his overnight score, falling for 69 as Asad Shafiq walked in.
Shan Masood, who had batted courageously but at a snail's pace, finally completed his 50. It took him 156 balls to reach the milestone.
Soon, 150 was up for Pakistan as the visitors hoped the pair, their last truly specialist batsmen, would hang on and build the innings towards a respectable first innings total.
However, English bowlers had other plans. Shafiq fell prey to Stuart Broad whereas Mohammad Rizwan was sent packing by Woakes. Both contributed in single figures as Shadab Khan walked in at number seven.
Masood, on the other end, soldiered on. At lunch, Pakistan were 187-5 with the gutsy lefty at 77.
Following lunch, runs flowed a little easier for the duo as Pakistan reached their 200 without any further loss.
Masood's ton was up soon. The milestone also helped him get to several first-ever achievements. More on that here.
The valuable 105-run stand was broken when Shadab, five short of his half-century, tried to accelerate the scoring and was caught at mid-on courtesy a top edge, leaving Pakistan 281-6.
Masood brought up his maiden 150 prior to tea but was out soon after as Pakistan were bowled out for 326.
More to follow