SHARJAH: Exposing England batsmen’s weakness against spin, Pakistan stamped their supremacy by winning the third and final Test on the final day by 127 runs and the series 2-0 at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.
Muhammad Hafeez’s 151 in the second Pakistan innings of the third Test made sure that his team were able to post a significant total of 284 runs for England if they wanted to level the series.
England came in to bat confidently with Moeen Ali offering shots from the start but Shoaib Malik was able to account for him and then Ian Bell in quick succession.
At the end of day four, England were two down for 46 runs and needed another 238 runs on day five with eight wickets in hand.
As day five started, England batsmen were soon seen walking back to the pavilion against right-arm leggie Yasir Shah and left-hand spinner Zulfiqar Zulfiqar until captain Alastair Cook and Adil Rashid showed some resistance. Rashid’s off-stump was then rattled by Rahat Ali who swung one in off the pitch.
Stuart Broad came in to see England off to lunch but as the second session started he was caught while sweeping off Yasir, who became the highest wicket-taker (14) of the series with the scalp.
Alastair Cook was joined by injured Ben Stokes but the captain and the new batsman were both stumped as Pakistan won the match by 127 runs and bagged the series 2-0.
Meanwhile, Pakistan jumped up to the second place in the International Cricket Council’s Test rankings.
England has dropped to the sixth position after the series loss. South Africa are well-placed on first, Australia are third while India have grabbed the fourth spot in the rankings.