Malik slams double ton as England toil

2015-10-14 16:09
Shoaib Malik (AP)

Abu Dhabi - Openers Alastair Cook and Moeen Ali batted solidly to take England to 56-0 after Shoaib Malik's double century lifted Pakistan to a mammoth total in the first Test in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.

Cook was unbeaten on 39 and with him Ali 15 not out as England trail by 467 runs in reply to Pakistan's first innings of 523-8 declared after day two at Sheikh Zayed Stadium.

England batsmen will have to bat out of their skins to thwart Pakistan's attack on a pitch which did not help the bowlers on the first two days but can change its nature as the game progresses.

Ali survived a confident leg-before appeal and the subsequent review when left-arm paceman Rahat Ali brought one in sharply to hit the pads but Australian umpire Paul Reiffel gave the batsman not out.

It was a day to remember for Malik as he capped his return to the Test side after a gap of five years with an epic knock of 245, his best score in Test cricket, after coming into bat in the third over of the match on Tuesday.

Asad Shafiq, who scored 107 for his ninth hundred, added 248 runs with Malik -- a new record in Pakistan-England Tests -- as Pakistan added 213 runs in the two sessions after resuming the day at 286-4.

Malik hit 24 boundaries and four sixes during his 420-ball knock before he smashed a Ben Stokes delivery straight into Ian Bell, who took a well-judged catch at mid-wicket.

Malik steered paceman James Anderson towards third man for two to complete his double hundred off 367 balls. He took off his helmet and bowed down on the turf in celebration.

Shafiq also completed his century with a sweep boundary off leg-spinner Adil Rashid as the pair erased the previous best fifth-wicket stand of 219 set by Paul Collingwood and Eoin Morgan at Nottingham in 2010.

Shafiq went soon after tea, when he was trapped leg before wicket off seamer Mark Wood while Sarfraz Ahmed (two) and Zulfiqar Babar (nought) also fell to Stokes.

Stokes was England's most successful bowler with 4-57 while Anderson took 2-42.

Pakistan declared soon after tea, leaving England to bat the remaining 23 overs.

Earlier, Malik resumed at 124 and hit a four and six off wicket-less Rashid before smashing a boundary off seamer Wood to better his previous best score as well as completing 150.

His previous best of 148 not out came against Sri Lanka in Colombo in 2006.

Both Malik and Shafiq left the England bowlers to toil in the first two sessions and rue the two chances they failed to grab against the two batsmen.

Malik was caught off a Stuart Broad no-ball on 40 and Shafiq was let off by Bell off Anderson when on 10 -- both on Tuesday.

Both England's spinners -- debutant Rashid and Moeen Ali -- failed to make an impact on a pitch which is expected to take turn as the game progresses.

Rashid, who was hit for three sixes by Malik, went wicket-less in his 34 overs conceding 163 runs -- the worst figures in an innings on debut.

Previously Australia's Bryce McGain had the worst figures of 0-149 on debut against South Africa at Cape Town in 2009.

Dubai will host the second Test (October 22-26) while the third will be played in Sharjah (November 1-5).


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