Cricket International

Ben Stokes gives England hope after Yasir Shah shines for Pakistan

Ben Stokes took two late wickets to help drag England back into the first Test against Pakistan at Old Trafford on Friday.

Pakistan, on top for most of this match, was 137-8 in its second innings at stumps on the third day — a lead of 244 runs. Stokes, who didn’t bowl in the third Test against the West Indies at Old Trafford last month because of a quad injury, took 2-11 in 20 balls.

He struck with just his eighth delivery of the match when he had Mohammad Rizwan lbw for 27 on umpire’s call. And the paceman struck again before stumps when he had tailender Shaheen Afridi caught fending at a short ball.

England vs Pakistan 1st Test Day 3 Highlights: Pakistan 244 ahead in see-saw battle

Earlier in the day, leg-spinner Yasir Shah took four wickets as Pakistan bowled England out for 219 in its first innings to seize control. Yasir produced prodigious turn on a wearing wicket that will have him licking his lips for more when England bat last.

The hosts had resumed the day on 92 for four and Ollie Pope (62) looked relatively assured as he moved to his fifth test half-century.

But the threat from Pakistan’s seamers was ever-present and 17-year-old Naseem Shah got a delivery to rise sharply off a length, catching the bat and providing a catch for Shadab Khan in the gully.

England’s decision to play an extra seamer with all-rounder Ben Stokes struggling with a quad injury meant Chris Woakes came in at number seven when they really could have done with a specialist batsman.

Yasir bowled Jos Buttler (38) between bat and pad, caught the edge of Dom Bess (1) for a fine catch at slip by Asad Shafiq, before a skidding delivery castled Woakes (19).

Only a late cameo from Broad (29 not out) saw England past 200, with the second leg-spinner in the Pakistan side, Shadab (2-13), wrapping up the innings.

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