In the enthralling 1st encounter, superb hitting by the duo Chris Woakes and Jos Buttler snatched the game from the visitors and managed to win the match by 3 wickets. Pakistan’s bowling attack was remarkable, but except Shan Masood, their batting line-up failed to put up a good score on the board.
The victory was a far sight for England in the beginning of the match. Pakistan’s bowling attack lowered their score to 117/5 in the chase of 277. But, Buttler and Woakes proved to be the players who can perform well when needed the most. In the counterattack, Chris Woakes scored 84* off 120 balls and Jos Buttler scored 75 off 101 balls. These two innings sealed England’s win over Pakistan.
Pakistan had an upper hand in many sessions over the four days, but the batting department failed to do justice to their lethal bowling attack. For the first two days, Pakistan dominated the game and was all set for the victory. But England found their way back in the game in the last session of the third day with some quick wickets. Pakistan had control over the England team on the 4th day, keeping the host on the ropes at 117 for 5. But Woakes and Buttler paved their way towards the victory with their magnificent knock.
Now, after the first win, England will look forward to sealing the series. The host can make some changes as they did in the West Indies series. Whereas, Pakistan will find a way to bounce back. Pakistan has the consistent history of being the most inconsistent team in Test history. Also, Pakistan’s team balance is questionable, which needs to be addressed effectively as the series moves to Southampton. Ben Stokes’ unavailability for the entire series can prove to be good news for Pakistan.
Fantasy cricket team prediction:
Jost Buttler was in the spotlight in the first test match because of his much needed knock (75 off 101). His batting form is improving. He has 220 runs in the last five tests.
Chris Woakes, the player of the match, played an important role in England’s victory. His not out inning of 84 runs and 4 wickets were the crucial factor in winning the match. Woakes and Buttler duo could be crucial in Ben Stokes’ absence.
In the absence of Ben Stokes, Joe Root will bat at his usual position, i.e. 4th. Also, he has an excellent record against Pakistan, 972 runs, 10 tests, avg of 57.17 runs. Zak Crawley can also be part of the playing XI in Ben Stokes’ absence.
Stuart Broad is in good form since being left out in the Test series against West Indies. He took 6 wickets in the first Test match and scored 29 runs. Also, he has taken 60 wickets against Pakistan.
Jofra Archer took 4 wickets in the first Test match. Ollie Pope has batted well in the recent matches, especially when England is under pressure. He scored 62 runs off 117 balls in the first innings.
Shan Masood played an exceptional knock of 156 in the first Test match. He was the only batsman from Pakistan’s team to put a good score on the board.
Babar Azam also played a crucial role in the first match. His 68 off 106 proved to be crucial in setting a good target for the host.
Yasir Shah took 8 wickets in the first match. Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah, and Shadab Khan managed to take 2 wickets each in the first match. Mohammed Abbas took 3 wickets with his good spell.
The Pakistan Team captain, Azhar Ali, needs to improve his performance. He was duck out in the first innings and scored only 18 runs in the second innings. His performance in the recent matches, especially away from Asia, has been poor. He has scored just 212 runs in 18 innings.
Can Rory Burns and Dom Sibley show the same promising signs as they did against West Indies? James Anderson managed to take 1 wicket only in the first match. If England decides to rest him, Sam Curran can take his place in the playing XI.
Pitch Report and weather prediction:
Southampton pitch has provided assistance to both the pace and spin bowlers. The most recent example of this was the recent win of England over West Indies. Also, spinners have enjoyed bowling at this pitch. So, the spinner could prove to be a key here.
Unfortunately, the weather report for the 2nd Test match is not good. Rains are expected to be part of the game.
1st Test match result – England won by 3 wickets
Top Scorer(s) –
Shan Masood (PAK) – 156 runs off 319 balls
Chris Woakes (ENG) – 19 (48) and 84* (120)
Jos Buttler 38 (108) & 75 (101)
Top Wicket-taker(s) –
Yasir Shah (PAK)- 8 wickets
Stuart Broad (ENG) – 6 wickets
Chris Woakes (ENG) – 4 wickets
The average first innings score at the Ageas Bowl is 300.75 (four Tests).
Captain Picks: Chris Woakes (BWL) (ENG), Yasir Shah (BWL) (PAK), Shan Masood (BAT) (PAK), Stuart Broad (BWL) (ENG)