England defeats Pakistan in nail-biter, clinches T 20 series by 2-1
England overcame self-created wobble to beat Pakistan in a pulsating final Twenty20 at Emirates Old Trafford and win the series 2-1. Adil Rashid took a career-best haul before England just did enough in a nervous chase to wrap up their white-ball home season with a thrilling three-wicket win over Pakistan in a Twenty20 final. Leg-spinner Rashid took 4-35 as Pakistan were restricted to 154-6 after winning the toss, with Mohammad Rizwan batting through the innings for 76 not out.
England opener Jason Roy, the player of the match, got the chase off to a brisk start with a dashing 64. But the hosts kept losing wickets before returning captain Eoin Morgan made a useful 21.
Liam Livingstone, the player of the series after scoring England´s fastest T20 hundred in the opener at Trent Bridge, struck one six and then holed out before Chris Jordan struck the winning runs in the last over. Roy took four boundaries off Shaheen Shah Afridi´s first over and swept spinner Imad Wasim for six.
Fellow opener Jos Buttler was well caught in the deep by Pakistan captain Babar Azam off leg-spinner Shadab Khan for a scratchy 21. Roy, by contrast completed a 30-ball fifty but on 64 he skied a catch off Usman Qadir, a leg-spinner like his father, the outstanding Abdul Qadir.
Jonny Bairstow holed out cheaply off left-arm spinner Imad Wasim and when Moeen Ali was bowled charging at off-spinner Mohammad Hafeez for just one, England were 112-4 off 15 overs. With four overs left, England needed 39 more runs to win.
But with Morgan hitting a couple of fours off Hafeez, England were 126-4 off 17 overs. Azam, rather than continue with spin, recalled paceman Hasan Ali into the attack. But left-hander Morgan hoisted him for two sixes separated by three dot balls.
But when Hafeez bowled Dawid Malan for 31, England still needed 12 to win off eight balls. Liam Livingstone, however, responded by hoisting his first ball for six only to be caught next ball, with England needing six off the last over. Livingstone and Morgan then got out in quick succession before a pair of hard-run twos from Jordan ended the match.
Notably, Pakistan have so far toured England seven times for the T20I series. They could only win two one-off matches- the first came way back in 2006 while the second came in 2016. In 2020, Pakistan drew the series 1-1 against England. A win in the series-decider will give Pakistan a golden chance to clinch their first-ever T20I series win against England. The hosts, on the other hand, will be hoping to win their second T20I series against Pakistan at home ahead of the upcoming T20 World Cup.