The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) was forced to form new team days before the start of their three-match ODI series against Pakistan after three players from their national side contracted coronavirus and the entire team had to undergo quarantine. However, despite the COVID-19 blow, the England team on Thursday night humiliated Pakistan by nine wickets to go one up in the tournament. The rookie English team did not just win the game, they did so in fashion. Batting first, Pakistan were bundled out for 141 runs in 35.2 overs, courtesy of England pacer Saqib Mahmood, who finished the match with a four-wicket haul.
Chasing a paltry total of 142 to win in 50 overs, England comfortably won the match by nine wickets in 21.5 overs.
Pakistan’s humiliating defeat had stunned the veteran greats of the country and fans alike. However, the former Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi wants his side to forget their forgettable outing in Cardiff and focus on the next game.
“We should forget this match as soon as possible.Pakistan, I am sure are not as bad.Come on boys, let’s fight back strong at Lord’s on Saturday. Well played England, that was a top performance from a new look side,” the veteran all-rounder wrote on Twitter.
We should forget this match as soon as possible! Pakistan I am sure are not as bad, come on boys let's fightback strong at Lord's on Saturday. Well played England, that was a top performance from a new look side.— Shahid Afridi (@SAfridiOfficial) July 8, 2021
What makes Pakistan’s defeat even more humiliating is that England had named five debutants in their squad. Veteran all-rounder Ben Stokes was the only player from England’s regular fifty overs set up in their playing XI.
For Pakistan, Fakhar Zaman starred with the bat as he scored 47 runs off 67 balls. In the second innings, England also suffered a hiccup after they lost Phil Salt (7 runs off 13 balls) early. However, after that, Dawid Malan (68 runs off 69 balls) and Zak Crawley (58 runs off 50 balls) guided the host to a comfortable win.