ICC Live

CT 2017 - Buy Tickets - 300x250


What are your thoughts on this article?

Taylor half-century powers England

Returning batsman unbeaten on 74 with visitors just 12 runs behind Pakistan's first-innings total of 234 on Day 2

Taylor half-century powers England  - Cricket News
James Taylor's half-century in his return Test helped England reply strongly to Pakistan's first-innings total and reach 222 for 4.
James Taylor came to the fore with his maiden Test half-century as England made a strong reply to Pakistan's first-innings score of 234 all out in the third and final Test. 

Taylor was unbeaten on 74 when stumps were drawn on Monday (November 2), the second day at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. He had Jonny Bairstow (37 not out), with whom he shared an unbroken fifth-wicket stand of 83, for company.

Taylor, 25, has just returned to the Test set-up, playing in his first match in over three years, having last done so in August, 2012. Taylor's effort helped England close in on Pakistan's total. The visitor is now just 12 behind and has six wickets in hand. 

Pakistan's spin twins of Yasir Shah, the legspinner, and Zulfiqar Babar, the left-arm spinner, were as threatening as ever, and always looked like taking wickets. But Taylor showed composure and determination, making good use of his feet to negate the threat. Taylor raised his half-century off 100 balls with a single off Wahab Riaz. He has struck six boundaries thus far. 

It was no walk in the park for Taylor, who walked in facing a tough situation, with Pakistan having slipped to 97 for 3. Taylor first added 42 runs for the fourth wicket in the company of Ian Bell (40).

Bell fell in the second over after the tea break when he gave Shah the charge. The batsman did not manage to get close to the ball, which spun away from him, resulting in Sarfraz Ahmed whipping off the bails. Bell had worked hard for his 40 runs, which came off 158 deliveries. 

When the day began, England lost Moeen Ali early, the left-hand batsman guilty of slogging across the line against Shoaib Malik's off-spin to top-edge a catch to slip. Bell then joined Alastair Cook (49), the captain, and the duo lent some stability to the innings, taking England to 87 for 1 at lunch. Cook looked confident and negotiated Pakistan's attack comfortably. 

England had added just three runs upon resuming when Cook fell to Shah as he attempted a glance but inside-edged it to the pads and Azhar Ali at short leg completed the catch. Cook hit four boundaries during his 119-ball knock.

Joe Root could not hang in for long as he edged a Rahat Ali delivery to Sarfraz, who took a good, low catch behind the stumps. 

Shah took 2 for 79 for Pakistan, while Rahat and Malik took a wicket apiece. 

Pakistan leads the series 1-0, having won the second Test in Dubai, while the first Test ended in a draw in Abu Dhabi.

To view the full scorecard, please click here.

Similar Articles