Ben Stokes-led England are playing the first Test on Pakistani soil in 17 years. There was a bit of uncertainty regarding the starting date of the match knowing that 14 of the England players including the captain Stokes were down with an unknown virus. ECB and PCB were keeping a close watch on the matter and a late decision was taken to start the match as per schedule after the players recovered in time. England won the toss in Rawalpindi and opted to bat first and in just the first session of the innings in this historic match, the visitors posted a record.  

Also Read | Pakistan vs England 1st Test: Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett give Babar Azam’s side taste of BAZBALL

England openers Zak Crawley and Ben Duckett put on 174/0 in the first session, which is now a record for most run scored ever in the opening session of a Test. They have India’s four-year-old record of 158 which they registered against Afghanistan in 27 overs. England got to the same mark in just in 23.3 overs.

Crawley even had a chance to become the first England criketer ever to slam a ton before lunch of a Test match on the opening day. However, he returned on unbeaten 91 at the lunch. In the 145 years of Test cricket, only four Australians, one Pakistani and one India has achieved this record. 

Pakistan gave debuts to four cricketers in the first Test match. They are Saud Shakeel, Haris Rauf, Mohammad Ali and Zahid Mehmood. What’s interesting and a big worry for Babar Azam’s Pakistan is that they failed to pick up any wicket and let the visitors post such a massive batting record in just the first session of the opening day of this historic Test. 

Pakistan are surely missing Shaheen Shah Afridi, who recenty underwent a knee operation, and is on path to full fitness. There is no date given on his return though. 

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By Dipak

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