Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan starred in a 200-run chase with four balls to spare in the second T20I ￼
England had won the toss and decided to bat first and the wicket seemed to play especially slow in the first innings, so the 199 England put up looked well above par at the time and both Pakistan openers Babar and Rizwan set up a strong opening stand and chased down the target with four balls to spare.
England had won the toss and decided to bat first. England started the innings very well and went on 42 with no loss at the end of the fifth over of the innings. Then, Dahani came back to bowl his second over and took two wickets in his first two delivery of the over.
However, it would be hard to imagine what kind of surface you’d need to produce to ensure both Moeen Ali and Duckett might excel, but this Karachi strip appears to be one of them.
A slow surface made it difficult to play down the ground, and so Duckett resorted to playing the paddle and reverse sweep almost exclusively to great effect.
A quickfire 50-run stand with Phil Salt allowed England to edge ahead, and by the time Duckett was cleaned up by Mohammad Nawaz, he had scored what looked an extremely handy 22-ball 43 in an innings where England otherwise struggled.
Moeen assumed control over the rules from that point, rebuffing each blunder in line and length – of which there were a lot on an unseemly day for Pakistan’s bowlers – making a joke of the thought this pitch might not be suitable for conventional shot-making.
He didn’t segregate among spin and speed, Usman Qadir and Mohammad Hasnain both seeing the final two deliveries of their last overs sent sailing over the ropes.
It was a stunning blend of timing, power, and excellence, an all-round treat for the eyes that looked, at that time, as if it might be the point of difference.
The wicket seemed to play especially slow in the first innings, so the 199 England put up looked well above par at the time.
That came thanks to two contrasting innings from the England middle order, with Ben Duckett’s pragmatic shot-making setting a platform before Moeen Ali’s furious elegance saw him caress an undefeated 55 off 23.
Both Pakistan openers Babar Azam and Rizwan set up a strong opening stand in the first game, just to see their partners disintegrate under pressure, thus it seemed they recognized solid wasn’t going to cut it. They could need to do it all themselves.
A couple of boundaries on either side of the square from Rizwan in the first over set the tone.
Rizwan led the charge early on as the captain took his time bedding in, though a couple of clobbered boundaries off Sam Curran suggested Babar, too, was beginning to whirr back into form.
With the pace bowlers seen to, Moeen turned to Liam Dawson’s spin, but 13 runs off the sixth over suggested Pakistan would allow the visitors no hiding place.
A world record unbeaten 203-run partnership that was pulverizing in its severity but tasty in its magnificence saw Mohammad Rizwan and Babar Azam chase down 200 against England with three balls in excess, and without the loss of a single wicket.
Babar scored his second T20I hundred, taking 62 balls to arrive, while Rizwan’s unbeaten 51-ball 88 was a more than adequate supporting act.
“A really good wicket, in the end, thought we batted well, but we dropped a big catch. But the momentum changed when I bowled my over. Duckett’s partnership with Salty was fantastic and I and Brooksy played nicely. It was different from the first game, looked worse but played better, and the two openers were brilliant. I know they get a lot of stick for their strike rates but they are brilliant and you can’t afford to bowl off-spin to them.”says Moeen Ali.