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Pakistan respond strongly to England’s 657 in Rawalpindi

Pakistan navigated their way to the tea break 108 without loss (Anjum Naveed/AP)
Pakistan navigated their way to the tea break 108 without loss (Anjum Naveed/AP)

Pakistan reached 108 without loss at tea on the second day of the first Test as they responded serenely to England’s swashbuckling 657 all out in Rawalpindi.

Openers Imam-ul-Haq and Abdullah Shafique both brought up half-centuries as the tourists toiled in the field in the afternoon.

Captain Ben Stokes was constantly tinkering with the field, keeping several players in catching positions, with few opportunities on offer on the flat deck.

Ollie Robinson
England could not make a breakthrough before tea (Anjum Naveed/AP)

Ollie Pope had the only two half-chances, while standing in for Ben Foakes who was still suffering the after-effects of a viral infection that spread through 13 to 14 members of the touring party a day before the match.

The wicketkeeper fumbled behind the stumps after Jack Leach beat the bat of Imam, and also missed an opportunity for a stumping, again not cleanly catching the ball.

England started the day with all the attacking intent shown on Thursday when they sent records tumbling, piling up an inconceivable 506 for four in just 75 overs, and by the end of their innings had scored 95 boundaries, including nine sixes.

Harry Brook brought up a maiden Test 150 and carted Zahid Mahmood for 27 – the most runs ever scored in a Test over by an England batter – after hitting six consecutive fours on day one.

Harry Brook
Harry Brook starred for England (Anjum Naveed/AP)

The wickets came more freely for the Pakistan bowlers on the second day, but England still set a record for their highest score in the sub-continent, narrowly eclipsing their previous total of 652 in Chennai back in 1985.

Having resumed on 34 from 15 balls, Stokes sent his first ball of the morning straight back over the bowler’s head for six, but was bowled shortly after for 41 by Naseem Shah, who was the pick of the Pakistan attack.

It was a pattern that would epitomise England’s batting in the morning session, with Liam Livingstone sending a six into the top tier in his first Test innings, but then picking out the man on the deep square-leg boundary to depart for just nine.

Ollie Robinson added a useful 37 from 51, and Will Jacks’ maiden Test innings finished with 30 scored at just over a run a ball.