England white-ball captain, Eoin Morgan and Dawid Malan starred in 5-wicket victory over Pakistan in the 2nd T20I. Eoin Morgan was the man of the match for his outstanding performance scoring 66 runs off 33 balls.
The 2nd T20I between England and Pakistan saw plenty of performances with the bat from both teams. England, opting to field first after winning the toss, were hammered by Pakistani openers. Duo of Babar Azam and Fakhar Zaman gave Pakistan the perfect start before Zaman dismissed for 36. The captain was joined by Mohammad Hafeez who had to wait long to be in the action for the first time on the tour.
With an average of over 50, the world number one ranked T20I player, Babar, scored his 14th half-century before dismissing for 56. Hafeez, now 39, continued and struck five 4s and 4 6s to reach his 12th T20I fifty and took the team score to 195/4, a record score at the Old Trafford, Manchester. It was also Pakistan’s highest T20I score against England.
England were quite sluggish in the bowling department. Saqib Mahmood and Tom Curran were way off from their best bowled quite raw deliveries giving Hafeez easy pickings over square leg and mid-off region. Chris Jordan was also expensive. Adil Rashid was the most successful bowler picking up two wickets for 32 runs.
England, chasing a record score, started off well. Tom Banton, fresh and confident from his previous match started well along with Jonny Bairstow. The pair combined to make 66 in 6.1 overs before both fell to leg-spinner Shadab Khan on consecutive deliveries.
Facing the hat-trick ball, captain Eoin Morgan survived and again survived a DRS second ball, an LBW appeal only saved by the umpire’s call decision. The Irishman and left-hander Dawid Malan helped England to chase a record score with a 3rd-wicket partnership of 112.
England are fielding two different teams; red ball and white ball, thanks to Covid-19 that has helped Dawid Malan scoring 54 not out otherwise it would have been Joe Root and Jos Buttler playing in the position of Malan, who played the supporting role and helping his captain to lead the charge against a good attack of Pakistan.
Pakistan were unfortunate as their leading wicket-taker in last year’s 50-over World Cup, Mohammad Amir could only bowl two overs before returning to the dressing room after suffering from hamstring pain putting him in doubt for the third game of the series.
England won with five balls to spare and the 50-over cricket world champions go 1-nil up in the three-match series. The Pakistani bowling card was not too good either. Imad Wasim, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Amir were all expensive. Haris Rauf picked a couple of wickets at the end and the 21-year old Shadab proving the best of the lot, picking up three wickets for 34 runs.
The third match will be played at the same venue, Old Trafford, Manchester on September 1.