Magic Abrar takes seven on Pakistan debut to leave England in a spin

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Abrar Ahmed enjoyed a stunning Test debut, taking seven wickets to leave England in a spin and put Pakistan in a promising position on day one of the second contest in Multan.

In stark contrast to a flat track in Rawalpindi in the first Test, Abrar took full advantage of a pitch offering plenty of turn to post magnificent figures of 7-114.

Abrar was unable to become the first Test debutant to take all 10 wickets in an innings as Zahid Mahmood swept up the tail to leave England all out for 281.

Prolific Pakistan captain Babar Azam 61, while Saud Shakeel was 32 not out when the hosts closed on 107-2, trailing by 174 runs as they strive to level the three-match series.

England were five wickets down after a first session that would have been significantly worse had Ben Duckett (63) and Ollie Pope (60) not put on 79 for the second wicket.

Skipper Ben Stokes put on 61 with Will Jacks before looking on in astonishment when Abrar beat him all ends up with a sublime delivery that cleaned him up.

The fit-again Mark Wood contributed a rapid 36 as England added 36 potentially valuable runs for the final stand before James Anderson and Jack Leach struck early to send Imam-ul-Haq (0) and Abdullah Shafique (14) back to the pavilion.

But the elegant Babar steered Pakistan to the close alongside Shakeel to leave England work to do on a second day of what has the potential to be another classic after the tourists' sensational win in the first Test.

 

Abrar-cadabra!

Abrar, overlooked for the opening Test, was an absolute magician – coming in after eight overs and bowling 22 consecutively to bamboozle England with flicks and clicks.

He took all five wickets fell in the morning with Zak Crawley (19), Duckett, Pope, Joe Root (8) and Harry Brook (9) all departing, the former just Abrar's fifth ball in Test cricket that left England's opener perplexed with one that came back between bat and pad.

His 7-114 ranks as the third-best bowling figures in an innings for Pakistan on a Test debut - behind only Mohammed Zahid (7-66, 1996) and Mohammed Nazir (7-99, 1966).

'Bazball' faces stern test

England's exciting brand of attacking Test cricket under head coach Brendon McCullum and captain Stokes could be a rollercoaster ride, and a bold declaration in the first Test yielded its rewards with England securing one of their finest Test victories.

The situation here is far from dire but going with just one front-line spinner in Leach may prove problematic on a turning pitch, especially with Babar a daunting presence at the crease.