Tue, Jul 19, 2016 - Page 16 News List

Yasir Shah leads Pakistan to 75-run win in first Test

Reuters, LONDON

Pakistan foiled a gutsy England run chase to win a gripping first Test by 75 runs at Lord’s in London on Sunday.

Having set the hosts a 283 victory target after their second innings was ended on 215 in the morning, Pakistan’s bowlers, led by leg-spinner Yasir Shah, provided a masterclass to bowl England out for 207.

Mohammad Amir, back from a five-year ban for spot-fixing, sealed the victory when he clean bowled Jake Ball.

England had never chased down such a total at Lord’s and while Jonny Bairstow was at the crease they appeared to still have a chance, but he was undone by Yasir when he was two short of his half-century.

The end was nigh after that as the final three wickets went down for 11 runs.

Pakistan’s players celebrated victory by doing press-ups in front of their jubilant supporters.

“It is one of the top wins as captain and for Pakistan as a team,” Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq said. “I am very proud of the team, and the way they came out and showed really good skills. Today, mentally everybody was strong and were patient. Everyone bowled well, especially Yasir Shah.”

England began the run chase confidently with Alastair Cook striking a boundary off his first ball, but the skipper stabbed at Rahat Ali’s delivery and was caught by Sarfraz Ahmed.

“There’s a bitter taste in the dressing room,” Cook said. “Some of the shots [were risky], but it’s up to the individuals to change. I always thought we were two wickets behind where we wanted to be.”

Alex Hales soon followed his captain to the pavilion after top-edging Rahat to Mohammad Hafeez, before Rahat removed Joe Root for 9 after he was caught in the deep by Yasir.

James Vince (42) and Gary Ballance (43) chipped away at the lead, but Vince got a thick edge driving Wahab Riaz and was caught by Younus Khan at second slip.

Ballance was bowled by a beauty, the ball jagging back from outside off-stump after pitching in the rough.

Moeen Ali was dismissed for 2 when he charged at a Yasir delivery and was bowled.

Bairstow and Chris Woakes kept the scoreboard ticking during a tense afternoon, but England eventually succumbed.

“It’s really frustrating, but we’ve lost before,” Cook said. “We can bounce back. Credit to Pakistan. We’re very confident we can beat them, but we have to get better.”

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