HEADINGLEY, Leeds (92 News) – England have on Sunday set a victory target of 352 runs for Pakistan in the fifth and final one-day international (ODI) of teh series at Headingley, Leeds.
Imad Wasim and Shaheen Shah Afridi led a Pakistan fightback but England still scored 351 for nine at Headingley as Tom Curran again pressed his case for a World Cup place.
England, in their last one-day international before the tournament hosts and favorites name their World Cup squad on Tuesday, were set for a huge score at 191 for two off 25 overs. But several batsmen got themselves out, including Test skipper Joe Root, who top-scored with 84, and one-day captain Eoin Morgan, who made 76 on his return to the side.
Left-arm spinner Imad finished with fine figures of three for 53 in his maximum 10 overs. Fast bowler Afridi took wickets at both ends of the innings in a return of four for 82. But the last over saw Curran hit six and then ramp an outrageous four off successive Hasan Ali deliveries to take England to a competitive total.
Curran finished on 29 not out -- the second match in a row where the Surrey pace-man had proved his worth as a lower-order batsman following his 31 in a series-clinching win at Trent Bridge on Friday. England rested Jason Roy following the opener s century in Nottingham. But they still scored rapidly after Morgan won the toss.
James Vince hit the first two balls of the innings from Hasan for four. But Vince, yet again in his England career, got out when well set, falling for 33 when he top-edged a hook off Afridi to deep square leg. Jonny Bairstow drove Imad straight to long-on to the disappointment of his Yorkshire home crowd.
Morgan, back after missing Friday s match, following a one-game ban for slow over-rate offences, hit several sixes -- including a huge one onto the roof of the Old Pavilion Stand off Mohammad Hasnain. But he too perished to a cross-bat shot, a pull off Afridi caught by Abid Ali, running round from midwicket towards square leg. It was the end of a partnership with Root worth 117 in 18 overs.
Root was also in sight of a century when he holed out off Hasnain, having faced 73 balls including nine fours. Imad then took two wickets in three balls to reduce England to 272 for six, dangerman Jos Buttler caught at backward point before Moeen Ali was plumb lbw for a duck. Ben Stokes, who made a match-winning 71 not out in Nottingham, fell for 21 to Hasan.
Key PlayersImamul Haq (Pakistan): The visitors' biggest positive in the series has been the opener's terrific form. He is the leading run-scorer for them with 234 runs in four matches, and has the highest average (117) among all batsmen in the series. He was hurt by a Mark Wood bouncer, but he is expected to put that behind and keep batting.
Joe Root (England): With the openers scoring a bulk of the total runs so far, Root has been left without much to do. In the few times he has got an outing, he has done well with handy knocks of 40, 43 and 36. The last time he played in Leeds, he scored a match-winning century against India, and the 28-year-old will be hoping for an encore come Sunday.
Typically overcast English conditions are expected, with a high of 19. Brief showers are forecast late in the afternoon, but that isn't expected to affect the prospects of a full match.
SquadsPakistan: Sarfaraz Ahmed (c, wk), Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Abid Ali, Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Hafeez, Imad Wasim, Yasir Shah, Hasan Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Junaid Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Amir, Asif Ali
England: Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Jofra Archer, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler (wk), Tom Curran, Joe Denly, Chris Jordan, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, James Vince, David Willey, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood. –ICC
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