Cook Stands Firm For England Once Again
England XI 269-9 declared (Cook 133) v
PCB XI 22-0
Tour game, Dubai, day one
Alastair Cook scored 133 as England declared their first innings on 269 for nine on the opening day of their three-day tour match against a Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) XI in Dubai.
The declaration offered them a chance to bowl before stumps but they were unable to force a breakthrough as the PCB XI closed on 22 without loss.
Cook dominated England's scoring as no other player could score more than the 46 managed by wicket-keeper Matthew Prior while pacer Mohammad Talha (4-43) and leg-spinner Yasir Shah (5-75) shared the wickets that fell.
Cook faced 260 balls, hitting ten fours before his dismissal immediately before the declaration. He was given useful support by Kevin Pietersen (38) and Graeme Swann (24) as well as Prior, who struck seven boundaries.
There were failures for Andrew Strauss (3), Jonathan Trott (0) and Ian Bell (0) while Eoin Morgan made 11 before becoming Shah's third victim.
Talha's opening burst did for Strauss and Trott while he returned later to dismiss Prior and finally Cook.
Shah also removed Swann and Graham Onions (1).
PCB openers Afaq Raheem and Nasir Jamshed then made their way steadily to ten and 12 not out respectively at stumps.
Onions conceded 12 runs in his two overs while Chris Tremlett delivered two maidens.
As expected, Graham Onions plays for England having replaced Tim Bresnan in the squad while Monty Panesar was selected in place of James Anderson as England went with a double spin attack, also leaving out Steven Finn.
© Cricket World 2012