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England holds nerve to prevail in Super Over

Jordan does star turn after Malik’s heroics help Pakistan match visitor’s 154 in regulation play

England holds nerve to prevail in Super Over - Cricket News
Woakes, the No. 8 batsman, managed to notch up some important runs for England.
Chris Jordan produced a sensational Super Over to help England edge out Pakistan in the third and final Twenty20 International at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Monday (November 30) and sweep the three-match series 3-0.

With the teams tied after regulation play – Pakistan replied to England’s 154 for 8 with 154 for 7 at the end of its 20 overs – Jordan conceded just three runs in the Super Over and dismissed Umar Akmal off the last delivery, leaving England with the straightforward task of needing just four for victory.

Shahid Afridi made England fight all the way but had too little to defend and Eoin Morgan, the England captain, brought up the winning runs with a brace to long-off off the penultimate delivery of the over to round off a night of unending entertainment.

Ten runs needed to win off six balls. That was the equation for Pakistan to do it in normal play. Sohail Tanvir, the No. 8 batsman, smashed a mighty six off the second ball after Shoaib Malik gave him strike, but England make a comeback, sending Malik back off the penultimate ball. With two runs needed off the last delivery, Tanvir scampered through for a bye to leave the scores tied and the contest into Super Over.

Pakistan's chase had been rattled early by David Willey, the left-arm medium pacer who removed Ahmed Shehzad and Rafatullah Mohamand inside the first three overs, the run out of Mohammad Hafeez sandwiched in between.

Malik and Mohammad Rizwan got together with Pakistan tottering at 11 for 3 in 2.2 overs, and put the chase back on track with a 39-run partnership for the fourth wicket even as the England bowlers continued to attack, not giving away easy runs.

Adil Rashid broke the partnership in the ninth over with Rizwan returning a difficult catch to the legspinner, who managed to hold on to it with two fingers while diving to his left. Umar Akmal followed suit soon after, leaving it to Malik and Afridi to take over.

The experienced duo took the attack to the England bowlers, hammering 63 runs off 38 balls, with Afridi hitting the ball out of the stadium twice in the process.

But by the 18th over, the required run rate had soared to over 10 runs per over, and Afridi, in an attempt to hoist Willey over fine-leg, lost his leg-stump. He scored 29 off 20 balls with the help of three sixes.

Malik was then left with the support of Tanvir, Pakistan still needing of 27 runs off 21 balls. The duo batted on, dragging the match to the final over before the drama unfolded off Chris Woakes's final over.

There probably is no better feeling for a bowler than to start his international career with a wicket off his first delivery, and Aamer Yamin, the youngster from Multan, did just that, trapping Jason Roy lbw with a sharp inswinger earlier in the night after Morgan won the toss and opted to bat.

The sizeable gathering erupted with excitement as the Pakistan players charged towards Yamin to congratulate him, but that enthusiasm slowly fizzled out as James Vince and Joe Root diffused the early pressure with a smooth second-wicket partnership that yielded 48 runs off just 34 balls.

But as he has done so many times before, Afridi introduced himself into the attack early - in the sixth over of the innings - and broke the stand. going past Root's defence with the fifth ball of his first over. The very next ball, he latched on to a sharp return catch to dismiss Moeen Ali for nought.

England was 48 for 3 at that point, as Morgan came out to join Vince in the middle. The duo added 20 off 19 balls when Morgan was dismissed by Malik’s first delivery that skidded through and bowled him. Sam Billings (7) fell two overs later, and the momentum in the England innings took a beating, the regular loss of wickets pulling the scoring rate down.

Woakes, the No. 8 batsman, was the only one who managed to notch up some important runs for England after that. He was dropped by Anwar Ali at third man in the 16th over, and went on to smash two massive sixes off the next over, bowled by Anwar, to help the visiting side set Pakistan a competitive target. Woakes and Vince put on 60 for the seventh wicket, the decisive partnership of the match. Woakes and Vince both fell in the final over to Tanvir. Woakes smashed 37 off just 24 deliveries with a four and three sixes, while Vince’s 46 came off 45 balls with three fours and a six.

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