Mon, Jul 25, 2016 - Page 12 News List

Root scores double ton in second Test

EXCLUSIVE CLUB:The batsman became just the sixth cricketer to score a double century at Old Trafford, with a Test-best of 254 putting England on track for a victory


England’s Joe Root celebrates after reaching 200 on the second day of the second Test against Pakistan at Old Trafford Cricket Ground in Manchester, England, on Saturday.

Photo: AFP

Joe Root’s double century and three wickets from Chris Woakes on Saturday put England on course for a series-leveling win in the second Test against Pakistan at Old Trafford.

Pakistan ended the second day having collapsed to 57-4 in reply to England’s first innings 589-8 declared, a huge deficit of 532 runs.

Root’s Test-best 254, just the sixth double hundred scored in 132 years of Test cricket at Old Trafford, saw him bat for more than 10 hours.

Woakes, who earlier on Saturday made a brisk 58, then underlined his growing all-round credentials with 3-18 in six overs as he dismissed Mohammad Hafeez (18), Azhar Ali (one) and nightwatchman Rahat Ali (four).

Left-handed opener Shan Masood (30 not out) and Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq (one not out) got through to the close.

“It was nice to go on and make a big one,” Root told Sky Sports after surpassing his previous Test-best of 200 not out against Sri Lanka at Lord’s two years ago.

“Recently I have thrown it away on a few occasions and I made up for it today,” the 25-year-old Yorkshireman added.

Pakistan batting coach Grant Flower insisted being kept in the field for a long time was no excuse for the tourists’ collapse.

“There was weariness and a huge score like that plays mind tricks, but that’s what happens in Test cricket, so it’s no excuse,” the former Zimbabwe batsman said.

England resumed on their overnight 314-4, with vice captain Root 141 not out after he had shared a second-wicket stand of 185 with skipper Alastair Cook (105).

Although sent in as a nightwatchman, Woakes on Saturday showed his batting class during a boundary-filled fifty that saw him outscore Root in in a fifth-wicket partnership of 103.

Two not out overnight, Woakes — who has scored nine first-class hundreds — was soon demonstrating a fundamentally orthodox batting technique with a succession of fours off Rahat.

Mohammad Amir, another of Pakistan’s left-arm quicks, was uppercut for six high over third man by Woakes.

Root had not been given a chance on Friday, but on 155 he had a reprieve when an outside edge off leg-spinner Yasir Shah just carried to slip. However, Younis Khan was slow to react to the difficult low catch.

Woakes’s 104-ball innings, which included eight fours and a six, ended when he chipped a return catch straight back to Shah to leave England 414-5.

That gave Shah then-innings figures of 1-139 in 38.4 overs — a marked contrast to his man-of-the-match return of 10-141 during Pakistan’s 75-run win in the first Test at Lord’s last week.

Root went to his double century with an audacious reverse-swept four off Shah.

Poor fielding has been a feature of Pakistan’s play this series and Jonny Bairstow, last man out for 58, was reprieved on nine when he edged Shah, only for wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed to fumble the catch.

Root was eventually dismissed when he skyed Wahab Riaz legside and Hafeez, running in for the catch, held onto the ball.

In total, Root batted for 10 hours, 18 minutes, facing 406 balls, including 27 fours.

Three Pakistan bowlers conceded more than 100 runs each, with Shah coming back down to earth after his first-Test display at Lord’s of 1-213 in 54 overs.

Pakistan saw off England’s experienced new-ball duo of James Anderson, returning to Test cricket on his Lancashire home ground after missing the first Test with a shoulder injury, and Stuart Broad.

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