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Aggressive England beat Pakistan by 74 runs in 1st Test

Aggressive England
England's players celebrate after the dismissal of Pakistan's Zahid Mahmood (not pictured) during the fifth and final day of the first cricket Test match between Pakistan and England at the Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium | Aamir QURESHI / AFP

RAWALPINDI (Pakistan), December 5: England showcased their masterful approach of aggression in Test cricket with a superb 74-run victory over Pakistan in the final session of the first Test on Monday.
Needing 263 runs with eight wickets in hand on Day 5, Pakistan were dismissed for 268 against the reverse swing of James Anderson (4-36) and Ollie Robinson (4-50) — losing their last five wickets for just 11 runs after tea.
Jack Leach had the last wicket of Naseem Shah, trapped leg before wicket, after England delayed the second new ball for well over an hour with Anderson and Robinson doing the damage with the old ball.
Pakistan succumbed to the relentless attacking field settings of England captain Ben Stokes before Robinson and veteran Anderson sliced through the lower order after Pakistan was placed at 257-5 going into the final session.
Robinson had earlier ended the nearly four-hour defiance of one of the four Pakistan debutants – Saud Shakeel – in the second session to a brilliant diving catch by Keaton Jennings as the lefthander top-scored with 76.
England had posted an electrifying 657 and Pakistan responded with 579 to concede a 78-run lead on a grass-less wicket where seven batters from both sides scored centuries.
England made a bold declaration with another rapid 264-7 in just 35.5 overs on Day 4 and set Pakistan a challenging target of 343 in four sessions.
England lead their first Test series in Pakistan in 17 years 1-0 with Multan and Karachi scheduled to host the remaining two games.
Pakistan-England match becomes highest-scoring Test ever to produce a result
Rawalpindi’s track has been in the news for all the wrong reasons since the past five days. England and Pakistan amassed a plethora of runs on a lifeless wicket, including a record 506 runs on the first day of a Test scored by the visitors with four batsmen scoring centuries.
But all’s well that ends well as the match that saw a whopping 1768 runs scored across five days, made its way into the record books by becoming the highest-scoring Test ever to produce a result.
The highest-scoring Test ever (1981 runs) which ended in a tame draw was played between South Africa and England in 1939 followed by West Indies-England (1815 runs) in 1930.
England pulled off a stunning 74-run victory over Pakistan to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series. The visitors plundered 657 in their first innings and declared their second on 264-7, setting Pakistan an improbable victory target of 343 on a docile track in Rawalpindi. This was also England’s only the third Test victory on Pakistan soil.
On the same pitch in March this year, some 1,187 runs were scored for the loss of just 14 wickets as Pakistan and Australia played out a tame draw.
Rawalpindi was termed “below average” by International Cricket Council match referee Ranjan Madugalle, who also awarded it a demerit point.
A venue is banned for 12 months if it accumulates five demerit points over a period of five years. (AP/ToI)

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