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Masood ton spearheads Pakistan fightback

by  Cricbuzz Staff  •  Last updated on 2020-08-06 23:17:00
When two spinners opened the afternoon session for England possibly to count down to the second new ball although even that made little sense with four fast bowlers in the side little did Joe Root know that the move could backfire And howShan Masood and Shadab Khan settled into a 105run stand that would wrest back all the momentum England had built in the morning session And unlike yesterday afternoon when England trailed on the back of some poor bowling this session totally belonged to Pakistan and their innovative batting delivering them to 3128 at Tea on Day 2The partnership for the sixth wicket instead piggybacked on some very good running between the wickets the act mostly driven by Shadab Khan and which largely ran England ragged leaving them stunned at the prospect of dealing with whiteball urgency in a Test match setup And Root had no answersPakistan scored 27 runs in the five overs that Joe Root and Dom Bess bowled after lunch And when Anderson and Broad picked up the second new ball and bowled eight overs between them 42 runs came off it And no wickets It was in stark contrast to what happened this morning when both the veteran seamers struck in their opening spells and left Pakistan huffing puffing and totally stalledShadab (45 off 76) had come out to bat to undo exactly that And it worked wonders for Pakistan who scored only 48 runs in the morning session but would take less than 10 overs to overhaul that There were only three boundaries (and no sixes) in Shadabs innings but he pinched 20 singles some of them risky but totally applauseworthy as Englands closein fielders wondered just how they could stop the singles from coming They couldntMasood went on to record his fourth Test hundred and third on the trot becoming only the fifth overseas opener since 2015 to hit a hundred in England By all means it was a memorable hundred given the bowling conditions on offer and his own struggles against Anderson in 2016 This time he left more deliveries even forced Broad to switch away from his favoured roundthewicket angle to lefthanders and kept minting runsEngland did pick a few of wickets towards the end of the session two of them from Jofra Archer who surprisingly got the second new ball only when it was 18 overs old Shadab was the first to fall albeit after losing his patience and miscuing Dom Bess to midon Archer took it up from there getting Yasir Shah and Mohammad Abbas off consecutive deliveriesMasood now batting with No 9 batsman Shaheen Afridi swung a couple of sixes off Bess to bring up the 300 for Pakistan And then a boundary in the same over to sum up Pakistans dominion This afternoon was all about themBrief Scores: Pakistan 3128 (Shan Masood 151* Babar Azam 69 Shadab Khan 45 Jofra Archer 345 Chris Woakes 243) vs England