England will look to seal the deal when it take on Pakistan in the second of the three match ODI series at Lord’s. The hosts are currently playing under Ben Stokes and have a number of debutantes who can excel as they showed in the series opener.
Saqib Mahmood marked his return to England duty with a four-wicket haul as the completely changed hosts put their Covid-19 problems behind them with an emphatic nine-wicket win over Pakistan in the first one-day international at Cardiff on Thursday.
Player of the match Mahmood took an ODI best 4-42 as Pakistan were skittled out for just 141 with more than 14 overs left to bat.England, the reigning 50-over world champions, finished on 142-1 to go 1-0 up in a three-match series ahead of Saturday’s clash at Lord’s.Dawid Malan was 68 not out after a run-ball fifty.
Together with Test batsman Zak Crawley (58 not out), one of five ODI debutants in the England team, he shared an unbroken stand of 120 as a match scheduled for 100 overs finished in a mere 67.1 England were fielding a completely changed XI from their previous ODI — the first time this had happened to any side in the 50-year history of the format — after a Covid-19 outbreak within their existing squad during a recent 2-0 series win at home to Sri Lanka required all 16 players originally selected to play against Pakistan to self-isolate.
In addition, injuries to the likes of fast bowlers Jofra Archer and Olly Stone and wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler meant they were effectively without two first-choice XIs. Yet their ‘C team’ dominated from the moment Mahmood took a wicket with the first ball of the match — and then dismissed Pakistan captain Babar Azam, the world’s top-ranked ODI batsman, for a duck with the third ball.