Nottingham    -   Pakistan cricket team has made a good comeback in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 when they registered a thrilling 14-run triumph against hosts England in their second match at Trent Bridge on Monday.

Set 349 to win, England got centuries from Joe Root (107) and Jos Buttler (103) but couldn’t complete what would have been a record run chase at a World Cup and finished on 334-9. After making its second-lowest World Cup total of 105 in a shambolic opening loss to West Indies, Pakistan made its second-highest score 348-8 in tournament history against England, the host nation and favorite.

England also has one win and one defeat, having beaten South Africa on the first day of the World Cup. England was always struggling to reel in Pakistan, especially after slipping to 118-4 in the 22nd over. A fifth-wicket stand of 130 between Root and Buttler — this World Cup’s first century-makers — brought the team back into the contest but both players fell soon after reaching triple figures. Needing 29 off 14 balls, England lost Moeen Ali and Chris Woakes in successive balls off Wahab Riaz (3-82) and Pakistan ended up comfortably easing home.

Earlier, Mohammad Hafeez headlined a return to form for Pakistan’s batsmen by making 84 off 62 balls, while Babar Azam (63) and Sarfaraz Ahmed (55) also had half-centuries. For a team that prides itself on its fielding, England was ragged throughout Pakistan’s innings, the tone set by a misfield from captain Eoin Morgan in the first over.

Jason Roy dropped Hafeez on 14, which proved to be very expensive, and Root gave away a boundary in overthrows that took Sarfaraz to his half-century. It helped Pakistan make a fast start, with Fakhar Zaman (36) and Imam-ul-Haq (44) sharing an opening stand of 82. The entire team only got 23 runs more than that against the West Indies.

After earning man of the match award, Mohammad Hafeez said: “Everyone believed we can do this. We’re really happy and everyone chipped in, taking the task and giving everything. To be honest, we were very confident and we had a good meeting together. We just needed one winning performance.

“It was a total team effort. I was just trying to play my natural shots. Sometimes you have to take calculated risks and it worked for me today. Whenever we come to UK, we get good support. It’s like a home to us,” he added.

Pakistan skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed said: “I think it’s a great team effort. Fakhar and Imam started well. The match starts at 10.30pm and the first ten overs is important. They got a good start and that’s why we got 350. We tried a few different things - we started with Shadab because they weren’t good against spinners. Fielding is an important part and it was the main difference. This gives a lot of confidence to the team.”

England captain Eoin Morgan said: “Great advertisement for the tournament, but disappoined to be at the wrong end of the tight finish. We thought the target was under our grasp, Joe and Jos kept us in the game until the early 40th over. We were outfielded today and that was probably the different between the two sides. It was way below par and probably cost us 15-20 runs. They bowled well, they deserve to win. The difference was the fielding I’d say. I don’t think it’s a blip and some positives to take to Cardiff against Bangladesh.”

Scorecard

PAKISTAN:

Imam-ul-Haq c Woakes b Ali 44

Fakhar Zaman st Buttler b Ali 36

Babar Azam c Woakes b Ali 63

M Hafeez c Woakes b Wood 84

Sarfaraz Ahmed c & b Woakes 55

Asif Ali c Bairstow b Wood 14

Shoaib Malik c Morgan b Woakes 8

Wahab Riaz c Root b Woakes 4

Hasan Ali not out 10

Shadab Khan not out 10

EXTRAS: (b 1, lb 8, w 11) 20

TOTAL: (8 wkts, 50 overs) 348

FOW: 1-82, 2-111, 3-199, 4-279, 5-311, 6-319, 7-325, 8-337.

BOWLING: CR Woakes 8-1-71-3, JC Archer 10-0-79-0, MM Ali 10-0-50-3, MA Wood 10-0-53-2, BA Stokes 7-0-43-0, AU Rashid 5-0-43-0.

ENGLAND:

JJ Roy lbw b Shadab Khan 8

JM Bairstow c Sarfaraz b Wahab Riaz 32

JE Root c Hafeez b Shadab Khan 107

EJG Morgan b Mohammad Hafeez 9

BA Stokes c Sarfaraz b Shoaib Malik 13

JC Buttler c Wahab Riaz b M Amir 103

MM Ali c Fakhar b Wahab Riaz 19

CR Woakes c Sarfaraz b Wahab Riaz 21

JC Archer c Wahab Riaz b M Amir 1

AU Rashid not out 3

MA Wood not out 10

EXTRAS: (lb 3, w 5) 8

TOTAL: (9 wkts, 50 overs) 334

FOW: 1-12, 2-60, 3-86, 4-118, 5-248, 6-288, 7-320, 8-320, 9-322.

BOWLING: Shadab Khan 10-0-63-2, M Amir 10-0-67-2, Wahab Riaz 10-0-82-3, Hasan Ali 10-0-66-0, M Hafeez 7-0-43-1, Shoaib Malik 3-0-10-1.

TOSS: England

UMPIRES: Marais Erasmus, Sundaram Ravi

TV UMPIRES: Ruchira Palliyaguruge

RESERVE UMPIRE: Chris Gaffaney

MATCH REFEREE: Jeff Crowe

POINTS TABLE

Pos Team PLD PTS NRR

1 West Indies 1 2 +5.802

2 New Zealand 1 2 +5.754

3 Australia 1 2 +1.860

4 England 2 2 +0.900

5 Bangladesh 1 2 +0.420

6 Pakistan 2 2 -2.412

7 India 0 0 +0.000

8 South Africa 2 0 -1.250

9 Afghanistan 1 0 -1.860

10 Sri Lanka 1 0 -5.754