Pakistan v England: Tourists win thriller in Multan to seal series

England players celebrate after Mark Wood takes a wicket
Fast bowler Mark Wood bowled on day four at Multan
Second test, Multan (fourth day out of five)
England 281 (Duckett 63; Abrar 7-114) & 275 (Stream 108; Abrar 4-120)
pakistani 202 (Babar 75; Leaching 4-98) & 328 (Shakeel 94; Wood 4-65)
England won by 26 runs

England picked up another sensational victory in Pakistan, winning the second Test by 26 points to seal a historic triumph in the series.

Mark Wood took three crucial wickets on day four in Multan as Pakistan closed in on what would have been a stunning 355 chase.

At 290-5, Wood had Mohammad Nawaz caught in the leg side for 45 then, a point later, did the same to dismiss Saud Shakeel for 94, but only after lengthy deliberation from the third referee.

Abrar Ahmed was taken for cover by James Anderson and Wood splashed the stumps of Zahid Mahmood at a pace over 90mph for his fourth wicket of the innings.

Although Salman Agha kept the tension high with regular limits, Ollie Robinson had number 11 Mohammad Ali caught behind to leave Pakistan 328 all out.

It gives England victory in their first Test series in Pakistan since 2005 and their first over such opponents outside the UK in 22 years.

It is also the first time England have won two Tests in an away series against Pakistan.

They will look for a clean sweep in the third and final Test in Karachi, which kicks off on Saturday.

England’s second stunning triumph

Prior to this series, England had won just two away Tests against Pakistan in 30 attempts over 61 years. Now they’ve won two in a week.

Moreover, they followed up the thrilling First Test triumph in Rawalpindi with another jaw-dropping success in Multan.

However, while England rarely felt likely to lose the first Test, this time they put themselves in danger on their own initiative.

A reckless 5-19 slump on the third morning opened the door for an in-form Pakistan side for an impressive chase – in July they knocked out 342 to beat Sri Lanka.

With England spinners unable to exert control and pace bowlers seemingly out of the magic deliveries they produced on Sunday, Pakistan came close. A growing crowd at a ground hosting its first test since 2006 cheered every run.

But Wood, in his first Test since March and bowling with the traveling England supporters in the stand behind him, made a telling intervention.

It was not without controversy. TV umpire Joel Wilson took an age watching replays of Ollie Pope’s diving catch off Shakeel, trying to work out whether or not the ball scraped the ground after the wicketkeeper took his gloves.

The vital decision was made by England and Pakistan’s best hope was gone.

The win gives England their eighth in nine Tests since Ben Stokes took charge, the series win ending a run of three successive away defeats.

England have the opportunity for another piece of history in Karachi – never before have Pakistan lost three Tests in a series in their own country.

Wood splintering ends resistance in Pakistan

The defeat at Imam-ul-Haq on Sunday night left Pakistan 198-4 overnight, 157 from victory.

When Joe Root caught Faheem Ashraf on a slide in the sixth set of day four, England were the heavy favorites.

But Nawaz, whose previous highest test score was 25, arrived with the intention of scoring. Salman, 54, who hadn’t been out earlier in the day, was dragged off.

England ran through their options. The second new ball was taken, but Pakistan only grew in confidence and ease. Stokes continued to steer clear of the attack.

As the game slipped away, Wood unleashed a barrage of short deliveries. When Nawaz gloved Pope it ended an 80 sixth wicket.

A race later Shakeel did the same and the controversial decision went in favor of England.

Abrar, the debutant who won 11 wickets with his leg spin, swung fours before slapping Anderson for cover.

Salman stayed, keeping Pakistan’s slim hopes alive with back-to-back borders with Anderson. In the next round, Wood calmed the nerves by breaking through Mahmood’s defense.

Salman hit two more legs on Wood, but Robinson only needed one bullet from a new spell to account for Ali and spark celebrations in England.

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