England vs Pakistan 2nd Test, Day 1 Live: Rain interrupts play

Hello and welcome to Sportstar‘s live coverage of the second England vs Pakistan Test at Rose Bowl, Southampton.



. It’s raining heavily at the moment. We may be in for some delay.

. Rain’s back again. The groundsmen come on with the pitch covers. An interruption.

. Anderson bowls a delivery on a middle-stump line and it’s full as well; Babar pounces on that, flicking it through midwicket for three runs. The rest of the over is bowled in the corridor or on off-stump. 85/2 after 33 overs.

. Babar Azam, the new batsman, gets a full delivery from Broad and he drives well. The ball doesn’t reach the boundary at extra-cover; Chris Woakes gives a spirited chase and dives to retrieve the ball before it touches the advertisement paddings. Three runs. 82/2.

James Anderson is cock-a-hoop with the dismissal of Azhar Ali. – REUTERS


. Anderson strikes! Azhar Ali edges, and Rory Burns at second slip makes no mistake this time. The ball was full, outside off, Azhar pushed at it. It caught his edge, and travelled low to Burns. Simple catch. At least, he made it look simple. He would have been relieved after having dropped Abid Ali early on.

Azhar Ali departs for 20 (85b). 79/2.

. After a maiden, six runs from Broad’s ninth over of the day. Abid Ali edges again! But there’s no third slip; the ball goes through the vacant region for a boundary. Broad strays down leg, and Abid collects two. 78/1.

. A single from the next over from Anderson. 72/1.

. A maiden over from Stuart Broad. Most of the deliveries pitch on a good length on an outside-the-off-stump line. They are left alone by Azhar Ali. The ball’s swinging under the cloudy conditions; one of the deliveries swings late, after pitching, and Buttler had to tumble to collect it. 71/1.

. He does the same thing off one of the deliveries in the corridor in the next over by James Anderson. Another four. Abid Ali moves to 42. 71/1.

. Broad continues. He bowls in the corridor for the most part in that over. Abid Ali gets an edge on one of the deliveries but it’s played with soft hands and the ball travels to the boundary at third man. 67/1.

Azhar Ali takes off for a run after playing a delivery to leg. – AP


. Anderson continues in overcast conditions. Rain may have gone away for the moment, but it could come back. A maiden over, first up. Anderson a number of deliveries straight, in that over, before dangling the carrot to Azhar Ali, who goes after the wide delivery outside off but doesn’t edge. Root, in the slips, was excited by that. 62/1.

Ultra-edge shows a spike when the ball passes the bat. But it’s not a prominent one.

Ben Stokes may be sitting out the rest of the series but the all-rounder has been central to England’s fortunes across formats. We take a closer look at the man and his method in the cover story of this fortnight’s Sportstar. Click here to download the ebook.


In Sportstar, this fortnight


. It’s lunch. We’ll be back in 35-40 minutes.

Ben Stokes is not playing this Test, but how talismanic has he been for England in the recent past? An ode to Stokes, an interview with Shakib Al Hasan and a lot more in our latest issue. Access it here.

. The batsmen not out of the woods yet, and Stuart Broad gives them a reminder of the danger lurking. Abid Ali edges – again – and the ball falls short of the slip fielder, again. Abid Ali does well to get his bat out of the way of an excellent delivery from Broad – pitched on a good length, just outside off-stump.

The pitch covers are on as it’s started to rain. 62/1 in the 24th over.

Chris Woakes reacts after Rory Burns in the slips drops a catch. – AP


. A maiden over from Anderson. He bowls in the corridor or lands the ball on off-stump. 62/1.

. A full delivery outside off from Woakes, and it’s driven awkwardly by Azhar for a couple. Perhaps he had too much bottom hand on that; the ball was squirted away even as the top hand came off when he played that stroke. Two singles from that over as well, and another couple through leg. Runs coming comfortably. 62/1.

. Crack, is the sound off the bat of Azhar Ali as he slices a short-of-a-length delivery from Anderson. The ball races away to the point boundary; the fielder spiritedly sprints after the ball but can’t prevent it from reaching the rope. Shot of the session so far. That brings up the 50 partnership as well. 56/1.

Azhar Ali checks on his batting partner after Abid Ali is hit by a ball from Chris Woakes. – AP


. Fifty up for Pakistan with another single to leg. Azhar Ali takes one of the few runs through the off-side when he defends a delivery to point and scampers through. There’s a misfield, the batsmen hesitate but eventually decide not to go for the second one. 51/1.

. A full and straight delivery from Sam Curran this time, and it’s on-driven – some wrist used to get the placement – by Abid Ali for three runs. A single to leg to make it four runs from the over. 49/1.

. Abid Ali gets hit slightly below the solar plexus. And he goes down, gets himself into a push-up like pose. The physio comes in, he drinks some water. And he’s back to face the next delivery. Four slips in place for Abid; Woakes is landing the deliveries on off-stump, but the final delivery is too straight and full, and it’s flicked away for a single. Abid keeps strike. 45/1.

. Another edge! But if drops short of Joe Root in the slips. This time it was off Azhar Ali’s bat. A single taken from the over bowled by Sam Curran. 44/1.

. A full delivery from Woakes, and it’s on-driven nicely by Azhar. Stopped by the fielder at mid-on. Maiden over. 43/1.

. Another flick off a delivery down the leg side results in another single. And then a sharp single taken by Azhar Ali. He gets a full delivery on his legs, digs it out, and sprints down the other end. 43/1.

Azhar Ali was nearly dismissed by Chris Woakes. The ball trickled away off his thigh and touched the base of the stumps after Azhar tried to defend a delivery. The bails weren’t dislodged, though. – GETTY IMAGES


. Abid Ali edges again, and he’s dropped again! Two chances for England wasted! It’s a good length delivery outside off, and Abid pushes at it, gets an edge, it flies through to Rory Burns at second slip at shoulder height. It hits his hands, balloons up and lands on the ground a metre or two away. The next delivery is down the leg side, Abid helps himself to a single. 41/1.

It’s drinks, at Rose Bowl.

. A couple to leg for Azhar Ali, followed by five dot balls. The last ball was left alone outside off-stump by Azhar, otherwise the deliveries are having to be negotiated by the bat. 36/1.

. Change from both ends as Chris Woakes comes into the attack. And nearly a wicket! Azhar Ali tries to defend a back-of-a-length delivery coming into him but cannot get his bat on the ball, which hits his thigh and trickles away to the stumps. The ball hits the base of the stumps but that doesn’t dislodge the bails. No harm done.

Abid Ali’s drive off a full delivery gets him a couple, and then Woakes strays on to the pads and it’s a four. Off the bat, that one, as it runs away to fine leg. 34/1.

. Sam Curran into the attack now. He is playing his first Test since the second Test of the series against West Indies. He bowls an accurate over; he is getting his deliveries to angle across and then come into the batsman after bouncing. Two singles to leg from that over. 27/1.

Stuart Broad uses an inhaler. – GETTY IMAGES


. Broad’s deliveries coming into Abid Ali are hitting him high up on his thigh. So the bowler adjusts his length and bowls fuller; the batsman gets an inside edge on that and runs a single. If he hadn’t got a bat to that, it would have been a good lbw shout. Two singles from that over. 25/1.

. Testing times for Abid Ali as he tries to deal with some excellent deliveries from Anderson. The penultimate delivery of the over is one of the best bowled so far; it comes in with the angle, pitches on a length, and straightens. Abid Ali does well to avoid nicking that one. He acknowledges the quality of that with a nod of the head. 23/1.

. Broad strays down the leg side. It’s a good-length delivery and Abid Ali attempts to tuck it away; it hits his thigh pad and runs away, evading the diving wicketkeeper. Four leg-byes. Otherwise, a probing over. 22/1.

. Three runs from the over from Anderson – a couple and a single. He bowls in the corridor as well, and Azhar Ali plays carefully. 18/1.

. Broad to Azhar Ali, in the corridor, and the ball narrowly misses the outside edge. A few outside, and then one comes into the right-hander. Azhar flicks it away for a couple. He gets a full delivery and drives to get two more. 15/1.

. Anderson bowls full, Abid Ali goes for the drive again, and this time he connects well, collecting a boundary through extra-cover. The first boundary off the bat. Anderson corrects his length immediately and gets the deliveries to come into the right hander. 11/1.

James Anderson celebrates after getting rid of Shan Masood. – AP


. Three slips and a gully for Broad as he bowls to Abid Ali, who negotiates the deliveries cautiously. And dropped! Abid Ali goes for the drive, gets an edge to second slip; Dom Sibley at third slip goes to his left and it’s dropped. The batsmen run a single. As in the previous Test in Manchester, the slip fielders seem too close to each other; this was Rory Burns’ catch at second slip but Sibley gets his hands ahead of Burns and cannot hold on. It hits his fingers and rolls away. 7/1.

. A loud shout for lbw but turned down by the umpire; it may have pitched outside leg-stump and may have gone over, too. Next ball, the ball lands within the tramlines and hits Shan Masood on his knee roll as he came forward for a tentative prod. The umpire raises his finger and Pakistan loses its first wicket. 6/1.

. There’s good bounce. A delivery from Stuart Broad kicks off from a length and Abid Ali, stuck in his crease, does well to avoid getting a bat on that. Buttler collected that at shoulder height. A maiden over. 6/0.

. In an otherwise accurate over, Anderson stays down the leg side on the penultimate delivery and Shan Masood helps it on its way past the wicketkeeper. It was off his pads, leg byes. Boundary. Two singles as well, in that over. 6/0 in one over.

. James Anderson to start the proceedings in this second Test. Azhar Ali looks ponderous in the dressing room balcony, he’ll be very keen for a win here.


Pakistan wins the toss and chooses to bat.

One change for Pakistan: Shadab Khan makes way for Fawad Alam, who makes a comeback to the team after 11 years. For England, Zak Crawley replaces Ben Stokes, and Sam Curran replaces Jofra Archer. These are the final XIs:

England: Rory Burns, Dom Sibley, Zak Crawley, Joe Root (c), Ollie Pope, Jos Butler (wk), Chris Woakes, Dom Bess, Mark Wood, Stuart Broad, James Anderson.

Pakistan: Shan Masood, Abid Ali, Azhar Ali (c), 4 Babar Azam, Asad Shafiq, Fawad Alam, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Yasir Shah, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Abbas, Naseem Shah.


Having lost the first Test from a winning position, Pakistan takes on England in the second Test at the Rose Bowl today with an aim to level the series. Our correspondents preview the match.


-Jos Buttler’s wicketkeeper was under the scanner in the first Test, and he had been quiet with the bat for the last few games. But he shone through in the second innings, helping England chase down its target of 277. Here’s what Shane Warne had to say about Buttler.

– James Anderson has taken seven wickets in six innings since the start of the Test series against West Indies. He will hope to shine in this Test; the last time he took a five-wicket haul in a Test innings was in January, 2020, in Cape Town.

Joe Root: Write off Jimmy Anderson at your own peril

– England hasn’t played a Test without Ben Stokes since July, 2019, when it played Ireland in a two-Test series. Only time will tell whether the team performs well here without the special, in-form player. He’s assumed a talismanic role in recent years, has Stokes. Here’s an appreciation piece.

Ben Stokes, don of the new era

– This will be Pakistan’s first Test at Rose Bowl, Southampton. It’s played just five ODIs here, winning one and losing four. For England, this will be its fifth Test here; it’s won two and lost one. The loss was against West Indies in the recently-concluded Test series.

A possible exciting clash awaits us in the second England-Pakistan Test after the thriller last week. Yasir Shah and the rest of the Pakistan bowlers will be wiser after that first Test and may have a plan up their sleeve when faced with a counterattacking partnership.

Pakistan had England on the ropes on the fourth day, before Jos Buttler and Chris Woakes turned it around for England.

The wagon moves to Southampton now, after three back-to-back Tests at Old Trafford. What’s the weather going to be like? “Thundery showers and a gentle breeze,” says BBC, with a maximum of 26 degrees celcius and a minimum of 19 degrees.


England: Dom Sibley, Rory Burns, Joe Root (c), Ollie Pope, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Sam Curran, Dom Bess, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Jofra Archer, Ollie Robinson.

Pakistan: Abid Ali, Shan Masood, Azhar Ali (c), Babar Azam, Asad Shafiq, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Rizwan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Fawad Alam, Kashif Bhatti, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Abbas, Naseem Shah, Shaheen Afridi, Sohail Khan, Yasir Shah.

Where and when can you watch Pakistan vs England LIVE?

Pakistan vs England will be aired LIVE only on SONY SIX channels from 3.30 pm onwards. It will be available for live streaming on SONY LIV.

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