Mark Wood’s fierce pace again proved a trump card as England bowled Pakistan out for 145 in the fifth Twenty20 in Lahore.
Having hit 97mph on his first appearance in six months last week, Wood returned to the side after a rest and picked up three for 20 in another rousing burst.
His skiddy speed proved too much for half of Pakistan’s top six, with Babar Azam, Haider Ali and Asif Ali all falling to the Ashington ace. Mohammad Rizwan posted 63, his fourth half-century in a productive series, but two run outs and two apiece for David Willey and Sam Curran prevented the innings from building any momentum.
Chris Woakes marked his first outing since March with the final wicket, as Pakistan left an over unused.
Wood took the third over and almost immediately clocked 95mph before taking out the dangerous Babar with just his fifth delivery. When the pair faced off in Karachi it ended quickly with a slice to the man at deep third and it was another knockout blow for the bowler here, Babar top-edging a rapid bouncer to the mid-wicket sweeper.
Rizwan was dropped on nine, mis-hitting Willey to mid-on where Alex Hales’ hands let him down for the third time in the series. Willey’s bad luck continued when he was thrashed for the first six of the match next ball but bounced back by snaring Shan Masood, whose attempted ramp shot pinged gently into the air off a leading edge.
The anticipation levels shot up as Wood re-entered the fray for the eighth over and he obliged with another speed-infused dismissal, Haider skying an easy caught and bowled after being far too late on a pull.
At halfway Pakistan were 66 for three, but while Rizwan continued to hold his own England found resistance softer at the other end. Iftikhar Ahmed chopped Willey to point and Asif Ali became Wood’s third victim, swinging at a leg-stump yorker and hitting fresh air.
Two run outs in five balls made a bad situation worse, Shadab Khan and Mohammad Nawaz both senselessly sacrificed. Curran ended Rizwan’s occupation and had debutant Aamer Jamal caught behind, before Woakes wrapped things up courtesy of a swipe from Haris Rauf.
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