Malan’s half-century helps England clinch series after 67-run win over Pakistan

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Unbeaten half-century by Dawid Malan and a dominant show from pacers helped England seal a highly-entertaining T20I series after a 67-run win against Pakistan in the seventh and final match in Lahore on Sunday.
England has clinched the series 4-3. In the first innings, Malan’s 78* off 47 balls powered the visitors to 209/3 in 20 overs. Mohammad Hasnain (1/32) took a wicket for Pakistan. Chasing 210, Shan Masood (56) did hit a half-century but did not get ample support from other batters, which meant that Pakistan could only score 142/8. Woakes (3/26) led the English bowling chart for the day and other bowlers took key wickets too.
Chasing 210, Woakes gave England the big wicket of skipper Babar Azam for just 4 after the batter gave a simple catch to Harry Brook at short cover. Rizwan’s (1) stumps were rattled by Reece Topley balls later, leaving Pakistan at 5/2.
Iftikhar Ahmed and Shan Masood then started repairs after two early hiccups. But they could not proceed for too long as Ahmed was dismissed for 19 off 16. Willey got his first wicket of the match after Ahmed gave a top-edge to keeper Phil Salt while going for a cut. Pakistan was 33/3 in 5.1 overs.
After the end of powerplay in six overs, Pakistan was at 37/3, with Masood (11) joined by Khushdil Shah (2).
The duo helped their side cross the 50-run mark and rotated strike carefully, hitting fours and sixes occasionally. The 53-run stand between the duo was broken after spinner Adil Rashid dismissed Khushdil for 27 off 25 balls. Pakistan was now at 86/4 in 12.2 overs.
From that point on, it was basically Masood carrying the Pakistan batting. Other batters, notably Asif Ali (7) and Mohammad Nawaz (9) failed to make an impact. Masood did score a half-century, before being dismissed by Woakes for 56 off 43 balls with four boundaries and a six.
Pakistan could only score 142/8 in their 20 overs as none of the batters except Masood, Iftikhar, Khushdil could get into two digits.
While Woakes (3/26) led the bowling attack, he also got support from David Willey (2/22) and also Topley, Sam Curran and Rashid, who all got a wicket each.
Earlier, put to bat first, openers Salt and Alex Hales gave England a solid start before Hasnain trapped Hales leg before wicket for 18 off 13 balls, leaving England at 39/1 in 4.1 overs. Salt was run out for 20 off 12 soon by Shadab Khan.
From 39/2, Malan and Ben Duckett rebuilt England’s innings. England was at 57/2 in six overs at the end of powerplay, with Duckett (8) and Malan (9).
The duo started to score with attacking intent. Malan in particular looked in good touch and scored at a better strike rate than his recent outings. A 62-run stand between the duo was ended after Duckett was run out for 30 off 19 balls by Rizwan.
Harry Brook, England’s star in this series was next. Malan brought up his half-century in 34 balls with six fours and a six. Saving the best for the last, Brook-Malan ended the innings on high after smashing Mohammad Wasim for 20 runs in the final over.
Malan’s knock of 78* off 47 balls with eight fours and three sixes earned him the ‘Man of the Match’ title.
Harry Brook on the other hand won the ‘Man of the Series’ title for scoring 238 runs.

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