The third Test: Can Pakistan fight back?
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2016-08-04 14:38:31

The third Test: Can Pakistan fight back?

An Edgbaston Test is a great week to be an England cricketer. You immediately feel at home. The support from the Hollies Stand is great and the pitch suits the English style of play.  The ball comes onto the bat nicely, but the pitch is not too bouncy. You can play drives and pulls. You do not have to go looking for the ball, just let the pitch and the outfield do the work. Even a forward defensive push can bring you a four at Edgbaston because the ball sits up so nicely. You do not have to worry about it flying through at pace or skidding on. Once you are in, you feel you can make a big score. It also suits English quicks. The seamers always extract something from the pitch. But bowlers need to be consistent. Spraying it around at pace does not work. It rewards those bowlers who land it in an area on a consistent basis so it is perfect for the likes of Stuart Broad,Chris Woakes and James Anderson. The Edgbaston pitch offers considerable seam movement with the new ball and if the conditions are overcast, the Pakistan top order can find itself in trouble if it continues its lacklustre form.Conversely, if the batsmen manage to hold their own and post decent scores, the bowlers have the potential to put some pressure on the English batting line-up that looked like a million dollars at Old Trafford, largely due to the sublime form of Alastair Cook and Joe Root. The English middle order can be as wobbly as Pakistan’s top order and despite the thrashing the tourists’ bowlers received in the second Test, they can regain their confidence if they are able to send back Cook and Root early. While history is stacked firmly against Pakistan, Misbahul Haq’s men have a habit of fighting back in adverse situations, and can put England on the back foot if they get their bearings right. The batsmen, bowlers and fielders, not to forget the leader, must have learnt some harsh lessons at Old Trafford and will need to put the harrowing memories behind them if they are to clip the wings of the high-flying hosts. England, on the other hand, won’t have the services of all-rounder Ben Stokes and will feel his absence deeply with both bat and ball. A tough but keenly contested competition is on the cards and here is to hoping that Pakistan give a good account of themselves on this occasion.

pk.shafaqna.com

 

 

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