England smash 506/4 on Day 1 versus Pakistan in Rawalpindi
England were at their sublime best as they floored Pakistan on Day 1 of the first Test in Rawalpindi. The visitors played an aggressive brand of cricket which has become a recurrence under head coach Brendon McCullum. England posted 506/4 (75 overs), riding on centuries from Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ollie Pope, and Harry Brook. Pakistan bowlers struggled throughout the day. Here's more.
England openers shine on Day 1
England openers added a record-breaking 233 runs for the first wicket. They managed the score in 35.4 overs before Duckett was dismissed. Both Crawley and Duckett played aggressively, not allowing Pakistan bowlers any room to settle. Crawley smashed 122 from 111 balls. He slammed 21 fours, striking at 109.91. Meanwhile, Duckett managed 107 from 110 balls, hitting an impressive 15 fours.
Key numbers for Crawley
Playing his 29th match, Crawley has raced to 1,485 runs at an average of 29.11. He registered his third century in the format and a second versus Pakistan. Notably, he averages a sensational 147.33 versus Pakistan, having hammered three fifty-plus scores in three innings. His tally includes a double-century. In 2022, Crawley has scored 731 runs at 31.78. He smashed his 2nd century.
Defining records scripted on Day 1
Crawley smashed the joint-fifth-fastest ton by an England batter in Tests (86 balls). While he shares the feat with the legendary Ian Botham (twice), Ben Stokes (85), Harry Brook (80), Jonny Bairstow (77), and Gilbert Jessop (76) top the charts. Crawley and Duckett scripted history by becoming the first England pair to add 200-plus runs for the opening wicket against Pakistan in Tests.
Duckett makes his presence felt
Duckett, who made his return after a long period, struck his maiden century. He now has 217 runs at 27.12. Notably, his last match was versus India back in 2016. He had managed scores of 5 and 0 in that match.
Pakistan bowlers struggle versus England
Pakistan bowlers were left shocked as England were on the front foot from the onset. England scored a terrific 174 runs in the first session as the bowlers erred consistently. Once Duckett was dismissed, Pakistan had some joy, dismissing Crawley and then Joe Root. However, Pope and Brook took over as every Pakistani bowler tallied an economy rate over five.
Pope shows his mettle
Pope has always been backed by England and he repaid the trust with a solid knock. He shared a fifty-plus stand with Root and then added more substance alongside Brook. Pope played intelligently and timed his knock to perfection. He shared a sublime 176-run stand alongside Brook. Pope slammed his 3rd century, besides surpassing the 1,500-run mark as well.
Brook shines for England
Brook smashed the 3rd-fastest ton by an England batter in Tests, having taken 80 balls to achieve the landmark. He paced his knock well and played aggressively. He hit 14 fours and two sixes to get to his century. Brook is unbeaten on 101 from 81 balls (SR: 124.69). He made his debut versus South Africa in September and scored 12.