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Pakistan spinners seal 127-run win over England

Pakistan celebrate the wicket of Alastair Cook on day five in Sharjah
Pakistan celebrate the wicket of Alastair Cook on day five in Sharjah
©REUTERS / Action Images

Pakistan 234 & 355 (Mohammad Hafeez 151) beat
England 306 & 156 (Yasir Shah 4-44) by 127 runs
Third Test, Sharjah, day five

Spinners Zulfiqar Babar, Shoaib Malik and Yasir Shah shared nine wickets as Pakistan dismissed England for 156 to win the third and final Test in Sharjah by 127 runs and claim a 2-0 series win.

Shah returned four for 44, Shoaib Malik three for 26 and Babar two for 31 as England, chasing 284 to win, were bowled out in 60.3 overs.

Alastair Cook was the penultimate man to be dismissed, having stood firm in making 63 in 164 balls but only four other players reached double figures as Pakistan closed out a convincing win.

Earlier, England resumed their day on 46 for two. Shah (4-44) struck in the second over of the day to trap Joe Root (6) plumb in front.

A couple of overs later, James Taylor (2) tried to fend an away turning delivery from Babar (2-31) but edged it to Younis Khan. It was Babar’s 50th Test wicket.

In the following over, Jonny Bairstow (0) attempted a sweep and was struck on the pads off Shah. The appeal was upheld but Bairstow reviewed it. Replays indicated that the ball was crashing into the middle stump.

A few balls later, Samit Patel (0) failed to put bat on ball and was trapped lbw by Babar. England were reduced to 59 for six in the first seven overs of the day.

Adil Rashid (22) and Cook (63) got together to prevent the slide with a 49-run stand for the seventh wicket.

Rashid offered stoic resistance from one end while Cook managed to stay down and thwart the bowling attack.

A few minutes before the lunch break, Rahat Ali (1-23) produced a superb delivery that nipped back in and sneaked through Rashid’s defences.

Cook managed to get past his half-century, taking 142 balls to get to the landmark.

Stuart Broad (20) joined hands with his skipper to ensure no more wickets fell till the lunch break. England were 120 for seven at the end of the first session.

Cook and Broad began the second session by hitting a boundary each in the first over. Broad lasted two more overs before he went ahead and swept a delivery from Shah straight down the throat of Malik (3-26) at square leg.

Pakistan needed just two more wickets to win the match when Ben Stokes (12) came out to bat.

Cook tried to attack Malik in the 60th over but failed to get to the pitch of the ball and was stumped by a mile.

In the next over, Shah sent one down the leg side as Stokes tried to advance down the track and Sarfraz Ahmed executed another simple stumping.

Pakistan managed to bowl England out for 156 and secured a 127 run win. Shah was the stand out bowler for Pakistan with yet another four wicket haul.

Malik added three more wickets to his first innings tally of four scalps to make it seven wickets in his farewell match. Babar picked a couple while Rahat snared one.

For scoring a splendid 151 in the second innings, Mohammad Hafeez was awarded the man of the match.

With a haul of 15 wickets from just two games, Shah was the choice for the man of the series award.

With this 2-0 series victory, Pakistan managed to ascend to the second spot in the International Cricket Council rankings, while England have slipped down to the sixth spot.

© Cricket World 2015