Impressive England Hold Pakistan To 129

Impressive England Hold Pakistan To 129
Impressive England Hold Pakistan To 129
©REUTERS/Mike Hutchings (SOUTH AFRICA SPORT CRICKET) Picture Supplied by Action Images

Pakistan 129-8 (Shoaib Malik 33, Swann 2-18) v England
First Twenty20 International, Dubai

England produced a superb display in the field to reduce a below-par Pakistan side to 129 for eight in the first Twenty20 International in Dubai.

Stuart Broad held three catches and along with Graeme Swann and Tim Bresnan, picked up two wickets as Pakistan never found anything like top gear on a slow track at the Dubai Sports City stadium.

They won the toss and chose to bat but got off to a sticky start, Ryan Sidebottom, Broad, and Tim Bresnan keeping things tight and getting their reward with the wicket of Imran Nazir, who faced 15 balls for two runs before pulling Broad to Joe Denly in the deep.

Opening partner Imran Farhat then flicked Bresnan for two leg-side fours but shortly after was run out by a direct hit from Kevin Pietersen as Pakistan crawled to 25 for two in six overs - their lowest score during a Power Play. Luke Wright and Swann then compounded their misery by taking a wicket in their first overs, Wright's slower ball inducing Khalid Latif (4) to edge to Matthew Prior, and Swann having Umar Akmal flamboyantly caught at gully by Broad for 13.

Shoaib Malik played some lovely strokes on his way to 33 in 26 balls and it took until the 13th over for the first six to be registered, Fawad Alam clipping Paul Collingwood into the stands. After Malik was dismissed, Abdul Razzaq repeated the trick, pulling Broad powerfully but the wickets continued to tumble, both Razzaq (22) and Sarfraz Ahmed (5) offering Broad catches in the third man region, Bresnan also joining the fun by picking up two for 30.

Broad, along with his three catches, picked up two for 23 while Swann returned two for 18 to limit Pakistan to their second-lowest T20 International total.

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