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Posted at: May 26, 2018, 2:02 AM; last updated: May 26, 2018, 2:02 AM (IST)

Pakistan in driver’s seat against sloppy England

LONDON, May 25

Pakistan patiently advanced to 350/8 against a toothless England attack to take control of the first Test on the second day at Lord's on Friday. Azhar Ali, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam and Shadab Khan made half-centuries in a solid batting display which left the touring side 166 runs ahead and in a strong position to go 1-0 up in the two-match series. England, bowled out for 184, toiled on another overcast day at the home of cricket, dropping several catches in a sloppy performance.

Resuming on 50/1, Azhar and Haris Sohail were untroubled by the England seam attack in the first hour and Azhar played one glorious cover drive for four off Mark Wood as the pair took the total to 87. Wood made the breakthrough when Sohail edged an outswinger to wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow to depart for 39.

England captain Joe Root rotated his fast bowlers in an effort to unsettle the batsmen before turning to debutant off-spinner Dom Bess. Azhar nudged the 20-year-old for a single to bring up a half-century that included six fours, but the compact right-hand batsman failed to add to his tally, falling lbw to a full-length delivery from James Anderson. Shafiq and Azam took Pakistan to 136 for three at lunch and the pair continued to gather runs comfortably in the afternoon session.

Brief scores: England: 184; Pakistan: 350/8 (Asad Shafiq 59, Shadab Khan 52, Haris Sohail 39; James Anderson 3/82). — Reuters

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