Ali stars as Pakistan restrict England in Champions Trophy SF

Hasan Ali and Ben Stokes
Hasan Ali and Ben Stokes

Cardiff - Pakistan's Hasan Ali took three wickets as England collapsed to 211 all out in their Champions Trophy semi-final at Cardiff on Wednesday.

Sent in on a used pitch after Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed won the toss, England found runs hard to come by, with no batsman making a fifty.

Joe Root top-scored with 46 and Jonny Bairstow, recalled in place of dropped opener Jason Roy, managed 43 in an innings without a single six.

Paceman Hasan returned excellent figures of three for 35 in 10 overs.

England, who were 128 for two, lost their last eight wickets for just 83 runs.

Such was Pakistan's control that Ben Stokes's 34 took 64 balls and did not include a single boundary.

The usually big-hitting all-rounder, fresh from his ODI best 102 not out in England's group stage win over Australia, was eventually deceived by Hasan's slower ball and skyed a catch to cover.

Meanwhile Rumman Raees, in for injured fellow left-arm quick Mohammad Amir, took two for 44 on his ODI debut.

But the way Pakistan collapsed to 162 for seven chasing 237 in their virtual 'quarter-final' against Sri Lanka in Cardiff on Monday before winning by three wickets would have given England a degree of hope.

Amir, who made 28 not out Monday in an unbroken eighth-wicket stand of 75 with Sarfraz Ahmed (61 not out) was ruled out with a back spasm.

Bairstow replaced Roy after the Surrey opener had managed just 51 runs in eight one-day international innings so far this season.

Yet Bairstow, opening for the first time in ODI cricket, had a narrow escape second ball when still on nought, after Junaid Khan appealed for lbw but he was given not out and Pakistan's review was unsuccessful.

Test wicket-keeper Bairstow cashed in, with two fours in as many balls off the left-arm quick.

Raees, denied the wicket of Alex Hales on an lbw review, got his man for 13 when the opener sliced a drive to extra-cover.

Bairstow was dropped on 27 when Azhar Ali failed to hold a tough chance at mid-wicket off a pull against Rumman and again on 42 when Azhar, this time at slip, couldn't cling on to another difficult catch.

But Bairstow's luck ran out when a misjudged pull off Hasan's third ball sailed gently to Mohammad Hafeez at deep square leg.

England were now 80 for two in the 17th over.

Root fell when well set after an edged cut off leg-spinner Shadab Khan was well held by wicket-keeper Sarfraz.

England captain Eoin Morgan, who made 87 against Australia, fell for 19 when, charging down the pitch to a wide ball from Hasan, he edged behind.

And when dangerman Jos Buttler (four) was caught behind off a Junaid delivery that nibbled off the pitch, England had lost three wickets for 20 runs.

Pakistan belied their reputation as a poor fielding side, with Fakhar Zaman holding a brilliant diving catch at deep square leg to dismiss Moeen Ali, while substitute Ahmed Shehzad ran out Adil Rashid with a direct hit.

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