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    Hales fined 15% of his match fee for taking the extraordinary decision - without the consent of management - to go into the third umpire's office to contest the decision of his dismissal. Today, the verbals towards Pakistan have been strong by England including Hales who after mocking Azhar Ali with fake tears then proceeded to drop an easy catch for Yasir. No point giving it large if you can deliver..

    Shafiq looking good so far alongside the future contestant of Dancing With The Stars candidate Younus Khan.

    (Original post by Chakede)
    greatest batsmen pakistan ever produced
    This piece is a good read on his career and life.
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    A frustrating day for England - and one which will be remembered for (uncharacteristically) poor fielding and missed chances.

    As I mentioned to yesterday and alluded to, I thought 328 was enough for England and I felt they were well-placed to go on and win this fourth Test and the series - but that was before I knew England would shell so many catches. In truth, the Hales chance was an absolute sitter and he'll be kicking himself. It proved costly, too, with Anderson/Root/Bairstow all missing tougher chances. You need to take one of those - because the old adage really is true: catches win matches, and England dropped when it mattered.

    The bowling was fine from England. Anderson went in with energy and gusto, Woakes continued to impress, and Finn had his best day in terms of wickets all series. This is a good batting pitch, too, so it's natural that you should take your chances and punish the opponents when possible. But England didn't do that - and Shafiq took advantage, crafting a masterful innings with an array of lovely strokes. That's his the ninth hundred of his Test career - and he deserved it.

    Sending him in ahead of Younus was brave, especially after his returns in the last Test, but it proved brilliant captaincy from Misbah. Younus, too, played a fantastic innings - and it took a wonderful catch from Broad to dismiss Shafiq, who could have batted for the entire five days by the way he was going. Worth remembering, too, that Azhar more than played his part for the tourists.

    Pakistan have a slender lead - and England have a (near enough) new ball, so it's finely poised as we head into day three. Pakistan may feel like today is somewhat of a missed opportunity - after all, they went from 277-3 to 320-6 at one stage.

    As we know, the Pakistan tail can be skittled swiftly, so it's hard to say who has the advantage. But I'm a firm believer in getting runs on the board, and Pakistan did that. They are well placed. You imagine that Yasir has to give more if Pakistan are going to really put their foot down on England's throats - and with four wickets for 500 or so runs, the pressure is on Shah to deliver.
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    I hope Pak don't throw away this match like they did the last one but it doesn't look they will get a big lead so the bowlers have to bowl extremely well to make sure that Pak doesn't chase a massive total in the 4th innings. Disappointed with Misbah and the new guy's batting today.
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    As you all know, I love cricket - whatever the format and whatever the country. I cannot wait for SL and Australia in the third Test, starting tomorrow. I really hope SL can get a series whitewash and emphasis Australia's Asian decline.

    In nearly 140 years of Test cricket, Australia have played 177 series of three or more matches and only four times have they been whitewashed: 0-3 to England in 1886; 0-4 to South Africa in 1969-70; 0-3 to Pakistan in 1982-83; and 0-4 to India in 2012-13.

    SL, meanwhile, have only ever won 3-0 three times: and one of those was against Zimbabwe, and another was against Bangladesh.

    If Sri Lanka do manage it, I feel for Starc. He's bowled exceptionally well throughout the series, but he's been undermined by his upper order's lack of ability when faced with spin, namely Herath's and Perera's.

    Come on, SL. Make history.
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    A really enjoyable day's viewing from a Pakistan fan point of view.

    I expected for Pakistan to be skittled out early but you can't underestimate the importance of Younus Khan starting the day alongside the lower order who can guide his inexperienced players through handling England's bowling attack. Sarfraz' positive approach was a good opposite to Younus and latter's role nudged Amir to make runs. They had to get past a 200 lead, from a psychological viewpoint. Had they been out for under 150, England would have been favourites to win.

    Warne rightly predicted Shah would fare better in this innings and so far, he has bowled lovely. For all his talk, only thing Hales will be seeing is his 'crying' gifs on his Twitter timeline after a failure and only worrying aspect for Pakistan is Wahab getting his first warning for straying onto the wicket and Amir needs to improve his line as it's straying too far off stump, needs to challenge the batsmen as Bairstow/Ballance/Ali and even Woakes could make it a frustrating day tomorrow to potentially, taking the victory away from the visitors.

    Looking forward to tomorrow's play in between catching the day's football.

    Also, with the opening position and partner for Cook up in the air, interesting to see Lancashire's Haseeb Hameed hitting a century in the Roses match to continue his good 2016 form. Likewise with the spin department, they need to start grooming potential players now and get them involved with the England Lions set ups.
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    What a day. Full credit to Pakistan - exceptional performance from them today, they were absolutely brilliant.

    Younus and Yasir will obviously get the headlines - and rightly so. The former batted England out of the game, frustrating the seamers and showcasing his ability. He is a bona fide Pakistani batting legend - and I was chuffed he reached his double century in such style, lofting Moeen for a huge six.

    Moeen struggled and England's chickens are coming home to roost. They've struggled replacing Swann for so long, it should not be a surprise to us that our spin options are coming across as sub-par. Likewise, there was a little in the pitch but nowhere near enough to trouble a Pakistan tail end notoriously short. On pitches like this, England struggle - and have always struggled - and will continue to struggle.

    Shah showed his worth and I absolutely loved that captivating battle between him and Hales. I mentioned yesterday how he would have to deliver for the tourists, and he did. Compare his performance with England's bowlers, who bowled well but didn't deliver anything match-winning.

    I felt Pakistan's tail would be skittled for a lead of about 70, but they've taken the game away from England today. An exceptional performance from them - but I have to question the captaincy of Cook, and the decision not to deploy Anderson. He's the best seamer England have - and likely will have for the next decade - and to not utilise him was madness.

    Vince have his wicket away, Hales chose a stupid review, and neither has done their chances long-term any good at all. The former just doesn't have Test cricket capability, I think it's fair to say. He may knock up the odd 30 or 40, but when it matters and the chips are down and England are three wickets down for around 40 runs, will he deliver? I doubt it.

    It's Pakistan's game from here on in. England will need something extremely special to get anything out of this Test - and perhaps that shouldn't come as a shock. They've been too reliant on certain members of the team for far too long, so it shouldn't shock us that when those star names fail to deliver, England falter.*
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    (Original post by Aky786UK)
    Lancashire's Haseeb Hameed.
    Sorry, I don't follow the county circuit very closely. Is Haseeb an opener? Some very good talent being grown in England right now

    Posted from TSR Mobile
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    (Original post by Enginerd.)
    Sorry, I don't follow the county circuit very closely. Is Haseeb an opener? Some very good talent being grown in England right now

    Posted from TSR Mobile
    The biggest talent of which - Ben Duckett - is on the verge of being called up for the ODI setup. Chuffed for him. An outstanding talent.
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    The biggest talent of which - Ben Duckett - is on the verge of being called up for the ODI setup. Chuffed for him. An outstanding talent.
    Yep, played outstandingly for the England Lions recently against SL A. Can't wait for the limited overs games.

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    da Silva gets SL out of a lot of trouble - and sets them up quite nicely against Australia on the opening day of their third Test.

    The hosts were five down early on at one stage, but they rebounded spectacularly as da Silva and Chandimal got them to a healthy score.*

    The former batted more explosively, while the latter displayed a maturity and was happy to dig in and frustrate the Australian attack after Starc and Lyon took three and two wickets respectively during that opening session.
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    I'd be more inclined to keep Vince in the side than Hales/Ballance - he has a good technique for test cricket and I think it's a case of learning how to cope with it all. The other two have technical flaws, especially Hales.
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    Broad fines 20 per cent of his match fee for questioning the Hales dismissal decision on Twitter. Expensive Test for him and Hales.
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    outstanding seam bowling performance form India to skittle WI for 100 and take the series 2-0 despite a rained out day. started off with swing masterclass from Kumar, and that some quick short stuff from shami and ishant. the base for the win was set by a 2nd seried hundred form ashwin and a maiden ton by wicketkeepr saha after the middle order had failed. indias young players really stepping up to the mark
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    Well, there we have it. A fully deserved victory for Pakistan - and one they'll remember for a long time, given Younus' majestic innings.*

    Pakistan seem to adore playing in London - and rightly so. They've got a great record at the Oval, and both performances in the capital during this series have been brilliant. This Pakistan side are a breath of fresh air - and utterly infectious - and both sides seem to bring the best out of each other.

    In truth, the final day's play was nondescript and we can't read too much into it. The Woakes run out was farcical, Finn's injury utterly compounded a dreadful four days for England, and Yasir showed his worth.

    Full credit to the tourists. I'm looking forward to the limited overs games, but they won't match this red-ball series in terms of entertainment or quality. This has been Test cricket as its best.

    Elsewhere, SL have posted a very respectable score against Australia - thanks largely to da Silva and Chandimal's hundreds - after succumbing to 26-5 on the first day and first session.

    If you'd have told me that Australia would've allowed Sri Lanka over 300, with Starc showing the quality and danger he was displaying, I'd have laughed. Full credit to the hosts - but Australia are set well. Shaun Marsh should have been deployed by the selectors a long time ago, and he and Smith struck fifties and their half-centuries propelled the tourists to 130-1 at the close after Warner was dismissed.

    The match will probably end in a draw, but the highlight of the Test will be Warner clubbing the opening ball of the Australian innings for six. Majestic stuff!*
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    Great day for Pakistan on its Independence Day to seal the Test win and in the week when they lost a batting legend of the past in Hanif Mohammed.

    It was slightly nervy when Bairstow/Ali were at the crease but that wicket of the latter was the major breakthrough and a relief because victory became more easier. Good application in the field - which is a rarity for Pakistan but when they do, then you know they feel confident - guided them to a deserved series levelling win.

    Misbah spoke eloquently post-match and I fear for Pakistan if he retires now and I hope he sees through to the NZ/Australia tour; emergence of Sami Aslam means Hafeez' place is in doubt; Shafiq continued his rising role in the Test team; Amir bowled well but lacked that aggressiveness I felt to get consistent wickets. A good competitive battle between the two sides and besides a few moments, played in a good spirit.
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    Realistically, England are a long way off being the number one side in the world - but you could probably argue that about every other nation, too. Aside from WI and Bangladesh, they are all much of a muchness: they display quality at home, and struggle away.

    England are too reliant on key players - and they've gone no closer to solving that conundrum during this series. Hales, Vince and Ballance still have question marks. There are a few lads banging down the door to be selected in red-ball county cricket (Bell-Drummond, Duckett, Westley et al) and they deserve a nod, but the selectors are prone to sticking with their choices for "one too many Test matches, rather than one too few", and Bayliss doesn't even watch the county game.

    The emergence of Woakes has been a real highlight - as has the form of Cook and Root, the two talismen, and Bairstow (the highest runs in a calendar year for any wicket-keeper in England colours) and Moeen and Woakes (two fabulous all-rounders).

    But the question marks remain over the rest - and there are two tough winter tours coming up. Cook's right: England's tail end should be icing, not baking the cake.
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    Very glad Pakistan won, and I too hope Misbah stays on. I do wonder what will happen after he retires.*

    I think it was a good result overall. Both teams played well and it was great to watch. I wish there was one more test, though. I'm in Pakistan atm but there didn't seem to be much hype around this because everyone said they found test cricket boring. It was a bit sad tbh.
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    Australia move past 300 on the third day in Colombo. Marsh and Smith both hit centuries - 130 and 119 respectively - on a frustrating morning for the hosts.

    SL only had one chance during the opening session - a half-chance which wasn't taken in the field - and Australia are set well, but have lost three quick wickets after lunch to make things a little more interesting.

    I imagine it'll end in a draw - Australia trail by 40 with six wickets still intact.

    (Original post by usycool1)
    Very glad Pakistan won, and I too hope Misbah stays on. I do wonder what will happen after he retires.*
    The thing about Misbah which most impresses me - in stark contrast to some Pakistan teams from yesteryear - is that he exudes a calmness and coolness.

    He isn't at all incendiary, he doesn't provoke controversy or criticism, and he has made this Pakistan side (after one of the most testing periods on the field with the spot-fixing controversy) utterly likeable and infectious.

    Take into account the fact Pakistan haven't played at home for years, and Misbah deserves full credit for making them such a force. He only sees his mother and sister once a year, which is a tragic scenario in all honesty.
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    I haven’t written a detailed account of a Cricket series in a long time but ENGvPAK definitely deserved one. What can I say? Absolutely pivotal Test series from two of the most exciting teams in the World and that would be an understatement.

    Firstly, Pakistan. Close to being written off before the start and many people predicting huge wins to England, myself included. Not many Subcontinent teams do well in England, as predicted with Sri Lanka and India but Pakistan were in a different ball park altogether. The controversy in 2010 was surely going to play on the minds of the Pakistan team but alas, they took the challenge and delivered to their fans and Cricket lovers the World over.

    Individually, the shining stars of the Pakistani team really stepped up. Yasir, Younis (final test), Asad Shafiq, Misbah, Wahab, Azhar, Sohail and the upcoming star, Aslam. Plus, notable additions from the rest of the team. Yasir is proving to be the little Messi-like gem people predicted. Most of his bowling bar one Test was World class and people do believe he is the best spinner in the World and rightly so. In my eyes, he would surely have taken the Player of the Series award, if not for Woakes (down below).

    Shafiq. I have been critical of his inclusion in the Test side for years. Not many match winning innings in his career prior to this series but that all has changed. A quiet match winner who isn’t interested in being in the limelight. He just wants to get better and better and I predict a very bright future for him.

    Secondly, England. A turnaround from the dreadful ashes series a couple of years ago. Who thought a team with a very out of form Captain would be a juggernaut on the World stage years later? Particular standout performers were Root, Cook, Moeen, Bairstow and last but not least…. Chris Woakes himself. The latter showing how indispensable he would be in the England wins. Not to put down the whole team but if not for his bowling, I sincerely think Pakistan could’ve won the series. He himself said post interview that his bowling was not as he would’ve liked it to be before the series and he was only in the team due to the exclusion of Ben Stokes. Surely his place in the team is guaranteed?

    I would write an account of each and every player but this post would be very long and I just don’t have the time. Imagine a 5-Match series...! Would love to have seen a team emerge victorious but at 2-2 I think it’s a fair result to both teams. I just dread the day Misbah and Younis put down their bats for good. Exciting couple of upcoming series for both teams, can’t wait!
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    Pakistan have been fined for maintaining a slow over rate during their victory over England in the fourth Test at The Oval.

    Misbah-ul-Haq's side were found to be one over short, after time allowances were taken into consideration by the umpires and match referee. Misbah accepted the charge and was fined 20% of his match fee, while the Pakistan players were fined 10%.

    ----------

    Meanwhile, SL have done really well to restrict Australia in Colombo. They bowled out the tourists for 379 after Smith/Marsh's mammoth hundreds, with Herath taking SIX wickets as Australia struggled to deal with his sliders.

    The tourists well placed, with 200 runs on the board and just one wicket down, but they conspired to lose nine wickets on the day as Perera showcased some brilliant keeping skills to get rid of Smith and Henriques.

    By stumps, Sri Lanka had reduced the deficit to two runs but have lost one wicket, moving to 22 for 1. Tough to say who has the advantage.
 
 
 
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