Posted in Cricket, ICC Champions Trophy, sport

England torn apart by a phenomenal Pakistan side in Cardiff

The thought of a major trophy will linger on the mind of captain Eoin Morgan for yet another year more as England let the critics fly once more at them after falling at the hands of Pakistan in the Champions Trophy semi-finals…

Resurgent and lethal as they were in the group stages, England were without doubt the hand-picked favourites to ease into the semi-finals however Pakistan were on their own run of form after beating South Africa and Sri Lanka in the group stage. Imperious wins against Australia and New Zealand laid down an even greater marker that England were odd-on to win the tournament but little did they know what Pakistan were thinking…

Most people would have argued with the fact that Pakistan chose to field first in the toss and you could certainly understand why that was when England surged to 128-2. But then decent bowling from Hasan Ali and Junaid Khan helped Pakistan build a strong wall around England’s nervy batting as the score reached 181-7 with only six and a half overs to play.  The hosts’ poor batting continued as three further wickets were lost to ensure Pakistan would restrict England to only 211 runs. And of course, most of this was down to the superiority of Hasan Ali’s bowling. Three wickets and only 35 runs conceded bolstered the Pakistani’s tally to 10 wickets in the tournament – the highest.

hassan ali

A man on top of his form…Hasan Ali

England would have to bowl at their very best if they were to have even a glimmer of chance of  booking a place in Sunday’s final. Frustrating as it was for the home crowd, Pakistan were stable and controlled in their batting whilst England were still trying to find a breakthrough. The first wicket had fallen at the point 118-1 but at that time, Pakistan had already built a platform and were consequently cruising through. At this point, we all knew there was only going to be one winner today and that team was Pakistan. England refused to throw in the towel just yet but no matter how hard they pushed at the death…it wasn’t to be enough as Pakistan wrapped up a thrashing with more than 12 overs to spare and by eight wickets.

azhar ali

Azhar Ali was on form yet again after scoring 78 runs

Britain Cricket Champions Trophy

Fakhar reached the half-century mark for the second consecutive time

The Pakistan fans were over the moon- dancing , singing and enjoying every single second of their time.  Whilst Eoin Morgan and England had their heads held in their hands after an utterly under-par performance from the high level standards we saw them set against Australia and New Zealand earlier in the tournament. Pakistan have also had their own hard times too in recent years but now they suddenly have a mouth-watering final to look forwards to on Sunday against fierce rivals India…

 

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