PCB XI v England XI, Dubai, 2nd day January 12, 2012

Panesar takes five to put England on top

ESPNcricinfo staff
  shares 58

England 269 for 9 dec. (Cook 133) and 82 for 0 lead PCB XI 200 for 9 dec. (Hazan 50, Panesar 5 for 57) by 151 runs
Scorecard

Monty Panesar staked his claim for a Test recall with a five-wicket haul on the second day of England's final warm-up match against a Pakistan Board XI in Dubai. Panesar helped England end the day with a lead of 151 after their openers reached stumps on 82 without loss.

By outbowling Graeme Swann - who finished with just one wicket from his 29 overs - Panesar made a strong case for inclusion as the second spinner in the team for the first Test against Pakistan. Panesar's last Test came in Cardiff at the start of the 2009 Ashes and it would still require a significant change of heart from the England management to alter their policy of fielding three seamers and six specialist batsmen.

Panesar, making intelligent use of a worn pitch, sparked a collapse that saw the PCB XI lose five wickets for 28 runs. Only an unbeaten half-century from Raza Hasan frustrated England, with the teenage tailender recording his highest first-class score while adding 54 for the ninth-wicket with Mohammad Talha.

Panesar, sometimes hurrying the batsmen but also displaying some pleasing variation, first had Fawad Alam caught at short mid-wicket off bat and pad before Haris Sohail missed a straight one and Swann had Sarfraz Ahmed caught at silly-point. Mohammad Ayub Dogar was then caught behind off an outside edge before Yasir Shah was caught at slip.

But Hasan and Talha then resisted for 28 overs, with the latter twice heaving Swann for leg-side sixes, before Panesar found enough turn to take the edge of his bat.

Earlier there were wickets for seamers Graham Onions and Chris Tremlett. Onions, playing his first game for England in more than two years after a serious back injury, struck with the fourth ball of the day trapping Nasir Jamshed lbw before Tremlett defeated Afaq Raheem - half forward to one that struck him low on the pad - and had Usman Salahuddin caught behind, fencing at one outside off stump.

With Alastair Cook having scored heavily on this tour, England took the opportunity to provide extra batting practise for some of their other batsmen. Jonathan Trott, opening with Andrew Strauss, responded with an untroubled performance as the pair reached the close with few alarms.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • JG2704 on January 13, 2012, 22:19 GMT

    @Khan1983 on (January 13 2012, 13:03 PM GMT) You sound like you're trying to convince yourself with your imaginative theories. Remember most of us - while confident of a win - have not been gloating whitewashes etc. I still think England have a very tough series ahead. Just one thing. I'll still be posting on these boards whatever the result and if Pakistan win I'll give them the credit they deserve. If England win will you do the same ?

  • silly_pt on January 13, 2012, 14:43 GMT

    England is playing fantastic cricket.Won't be surprised if they beat Pakistan. But that would be tremendous achievement.

  • on January 13, 2012, 13:49 GMT

    I would like to say that it would be much more better if Anderson and Broad come on time before the start of the test series between England and Pakistan as they are the two main strike bowlers. I would also like to request the ECB to pray for their return.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 13, 2012, 13:34 GMT

    Again, when push comes to shove England upped the intensity a little and won comfortably. Swann 16 overs for 24 runs. Monty expensive but took wickets again 3-46 in fewer overs than Swann. I think that the 2 spinner strategy is looking like a real option here. And I'd lay a small bet that Morgan will be sacrificed now.

  • Yevghenny on January 13, 2012, 13:33 GMT

    The talk about England being unable to perform in subcontinent may be true about ODI's, but England can hold their own in these conditions. Huge blow losing Bresnan though, he usually out-performs in these conditions

  • gunnerr4life on January 13, 2012, 13:26 GMT

    I think PCB X1 purposely gave 5 wickets to monty so that England play him instead of Morgan in the first test ! This will be a blunder and will make Pak bowlers job easier ...

  • 200ondebut on January 13, 2012, 13:16 GMT

    Another good victory - hopefully Engalnd are hitting their stride when it matters.

    Panesar's performance has made Bresnan's failure to get fit following his operation more crucial. With Bresnan fit I think England would have been more likely to try a 5 man attack (I would also back him to score more than Morgan!) . We should also not forget that the pitch for the test may be diffreent than those for the warm up.

  • SirViv1973 on January 13, 2012, 13:07 GMT

    Quite surprisied with eng declaration, I really thought Flower would have wanted Bell and in particular Morgan to spend a bit more time in the middle. Perhaps he was keen that the team go for the win or maybe he felt it is was more important for Tremlett and Swann to get some more overs under their belts. Good to see Onions bag a few wickets but was again expensive. Monty has done all that could have been asked of him in this game but I still think it's very unlikley he will play next week, although Tremlett has staked his claim with another couple of wickets and he kept things tidy, so he could yet pip Finn tothe 3rd seamers spot behind Jimmy and Broad. In regrards to Swann he has been out bowled by Monty in both inns so there is a little cause for concern but I still think he will do the business when Eng need him to.

  • Khan1983 on January 13, 2012, 13:03 GMT

    Here we go again, the barmy army getting back to frenzy mood! Here's a food for thought, suddenly the Pakistani players who should be showing they are good enuf for International duties start throwing their wickets to 2nd string bowlers while keeping the main ones at bay (swann)? Are th two Pakistani coaches collaborating(fixing,ahem), I mean fixing the England team for their advantage? Lolz, Far fetched? Or is it? Answer will be when Bowling figures from the 1st test become apparent!! If it indeed is- well done boys -for messing up with selection of opposite number ;)

  • on January 13, 2012, 12:32 GMT

    Hopefully they will have the balls to select the best attack they have available. Anderson, Broad, Finn & Panesar.

  • JG2704 on January 13, 2012, 22:19 GMT

    @Khan1983 on (January 13 2012, 13:03 PM GMT) You sound like you're trying to convince yourself with your imaginative theories. Remember most of us - while confident of a win - have not been gloating whitewashes etc. I still think England have a very tough series ahead. Just one thing. I'll still be posting on these boards whatever the result and if Pakistan win I'll give them the credit they deserve. If England win will you do the same ?

  • silly_pt on January 13, 2012, 14:43 GMT

    England is playing fantastic cricket.Won't be surprised if they beat Pakistan. But that would be tremendous achievement.

  • on January 13, 2012, 13:49 GMT

    I would like to say that it would be much more better if Anderson and Broad come on time before the start of the test series between England and Pakistan as they are the two main strike bowlers. I would also like to request the ECB to pray for their return.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 13, 2012, 13:34 GMT

    Again, when push comes to shove England upped the intensity a little and won comfortably. Swann 16 overs for 24 runs. Monty expensive but took wickets again 3-46 in fewer overs than Swann. I think that the 2 spinner strategy is looking like a real option here. And I'd lay a small bet that Morgan will be sacrificed now.

  • Yevghenny on January 13, 2012, 13:33 GMT

    The talk about England being unable to perform in subcontinent may be true about ODI's, but England can hold their own in these conditions. Huge blow losing Bresnan though, he usually out-performs in these conditions

  • gunnerr4life on January 13, 2012, 13:26 GMT

    I think PCB X1 purposely gave 5 wickets to monty so that England play him instead of Morgan in the first test ! This will be a blunder and will make Pak bowlers job easier ...

  • 200ondebut on January 13, 2012, 13:16 GMT

    Another good victory - hopefully Engalnd are hitting their stride when it matters.

    Panesar's performance has made Bresnan's failure to get fit following his operation more crucial. With Bresnan fit I think England would have been more likely to try a 5 man attack (I would also back him to score more than Morgan!) . We should also not forget that the pitch for the test may be diffreent than those for the warm up.

  • SirViv1973 on January 13, 2012, 13:07 GMT

    Quite surprisied with eng declaration, I really thought Flower would have wanted Bell and in particular Morgan to spend a bit more time in the middle. Perhaps he was keen that the team go for the win or maybe he felt it is was more important for Tremlett and Swann to get some more overs under their belts. Good to see Onions bag a few wickets but was again expensive. Monty has done all that could have been asked of him in this game but I still think it's very unlikley he will play next week, although Tremlett has staked his claim with another couple of wickets and he kept things tidy, so he could yet pip Finn tothe 3rd seamers spot behind Jimmy and Broad. In regrards to Swann he has been out bowled by Monty in both inns so there is a little cause for concern but I still think he will do the business when Eng need him to.

  • Khan1983 on January 13, 2012, 13:03 GMT

    Here we go again, the barmy army getting back to frenzy mood! Here's a food for thought, suddenly the Pakistani players who should be showing they are good enuf for International duties start throwing their wickets to 2nd string bowlers while keeping the main ones at bay (swann)? Are th two Pakistani coaches collaborating(fixing,ahem), I mean fixing the England team for their advantage? Lolz, Far fetched? Or is it? Answer will be when Bowling figures from the 1st test become apparent!! If it indeed is- well done boys -for messing up with selection of opposite number ;)

  • on January 13, 2012, 12:32 GMT

    Hopefully they will have the balls to select the best attack they have available. Anderson, Broad, Finn & Panesar.

  • on January 13, 2012, 11:31 GMT

    It doesn't matter what England play or what team Pakistan play, the only certainty is that it will be an English white wash. Just as it is an Australian white wash of India. India are my second fav team its hard to watch but there is no way India or Pakistan can beat England or Australia and throw in SA. The interesting question is why. Why are England and Australia so good at the moment?

  • CricketingStargazer on January 13, 2012, 11:24 GMT

    As of now, Graeme Swann has 13 overs for 19 runs. It looks like the batsmen are terrified of him. It also looks like he is taking wickets at the other end...

  • armanigeorge2 on January 13, 2012, 11:09 GMT

    england will win the match but not sure will win the series....pakistan also perfect l lineup in the batting side as wel asl bowling side also.

  • JG2704 on January 13, 2012, 11:08 GMT

    @landl47 on (January 13 2012, 00:05 AM GMT) - well Khan1983 isn't having it. It's obviously (England's improved form) due to the pitch differing from when each team bats - yeah that'll be right

  • JG2704 on January 13, 2012, 11:08 GMT

    @Trickstar on (January 12 2012, 20:18 PM GMT) - I'm not going to say Monty is better at the bowling role than Swann at the moment , but what I will say is that when Swann first came into the England side he was nowhere near the bowler he is now. Monty hasn't played for Eng for a few years now. Who's to say he hasn't upped his game in that time , the same way Swann did in between his first stint in the side and his present stint?

  • JG2704 on January 13, 2012, 11:07 GMT

    @SirViv1973 on (January 12 2012, 19:52 PM GMT) Actually it's kind of gradually gone from the 5/1/5 formation to the 6/1/4 formation. I still maintain that our best series win was vs Australia in England in 2005 as no one could say that this was an Aus side in transition etc and it was done with a 5/1/5 formation - one of the bowlers being Flintoff who could bat a bit - same as Broad or Bresnan who has no gone home. BTW people say about Morgan being under pressure. Is it just my thinking or do England give their batsmen a longer run compared to their bowlers if they are not doing the business?

  • Optic on January 13, 2012, 10:48 GMT

    @yorkslanka LOL best spinner in England, he wasn't even the best English spinner in the County championship, that belongs the Keedy, out bowled Monty all season long and has done for years tbh. Lets be honest this talk of Monty being better than Swann is frankly cringe-worthy and anyone that watches County Cricket knows that.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 13, 2012, 9:10 GMT

    Onions 2-6 off his first two overs. The sort of rubbish that most Test sides would kill for! :-) All in all the two warm-ups seem to have served their function but, with that declaration before Morgan could get another bat I think that Andrew Strauss has dropped a BIG hint. Wombats: the comments closed after your answer arrived but, yes, you had two out of 3. India are the only side to have lost 4 times by 200 or more runs, the last of the defeats to New Zealand in 2010. In fact, it is England and South Africa who have never had a 200+ run defeat. Pretty good try!

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on January 13, 2012, 9:10 GMT

    RandyOz, still hurts doesn't it? What you should remember about last winter's ashes defeat is that you lost to a team of champions, whether you care to admit or not is irrelevant.

  • Tom_Bowler on January 13, 2012, 9:09 GMT

    Good old RandyOzzzzzzzzz. Persistently refuses to be discouraged by his inability to call cricket. "Graeme Onions is rubbish" quoth he leading to Onions bagging two in his first two overs.

  • Elliott_Tree on January 13, 2012, 8:19 GMT

    @Trickstar on (January 12 2012, 20:18 PM GMT): I think you make a key point about Swann: when you need your spinner to win you the game in the last innings - he steps up and does it. Whether it's skill or temperament or what, I don't know, but it wins Eng matches that could easily be draws. OK, he's not exactly Warne or Murali - a genius winning games all over the place, but he doesn't have to, the Eng bowlers work as a team. And does he ever totally fall apart and lose control of one end putting more pressure on the quicks? I haven't done a full match archive trawl, but none spring to mind

  • yorkslanka on January 13, 2012, 7:19 GMT

    as i have said before, anothe good performance by the best spinner in England, Panesar..swann is a better bat and fielder but I am glad that Panesar has reminded the selectors that he has the skills in the bowling department..

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on January 13, 2012, 0:36 GMT

    Panesar looks like he had a great game, Swann's definitely started to figure out the pitches too. It's funny when you're at the top, people will try and say whatever they can to inflict some sort of slight upon your reign as the number one, but this doesn't seem to bother England as they win everything.

  • landl47 on January 13, 2012, 0:05 GMT

    It's interesting to see that all the Pakistan posters claiming that England couldn't play in the sibcontinent seem to have stopped posting. Monty has given the selectors something to think about; if this is the kind of pitch that will be provided for the tests then two spinners is defintely a possibility. To those suggesting that Swann should not play, though, remember that in England's last test he took 9-208. Reports of his demise are somewhat premature. Even though he didn't take wickets in this innings, he bowled tight; even with a couple of sixes off him he still conceded only 2.3 runs an over. I don't think England will play 5 bowlers, so it's a question of 3 seamers + 1 spinner or 2+2. Tough decision.

  • SirViv1973 on January 12, 2012, 23:20 GMT

    @Phoenixsteve, Would you really start with Onions ahead of Anderson and one of Tremlett or Finn ? I think Jimmy will play for sure I know these won't be his preferred conditions but he is the leader of the attack and bowled pretty well in the first game. I think there is a chance Tremlett could get the nod ahead of Finn but I just think Finn maybe is bit more in the groove than Tremlett who has been out for a while. Finn did well in India and was playing first class cricket in NZL for a month up until Xmas. Onions did pick up a wicket but went for too many runs, he is very much the fifth seamer in the squad and I think he would had to have bowled a fantastic spell today just to had even have a sniff of making the team for the first test.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 12, 2012, 23:14 GMT

    Onions obviously is not ready for a return to Test cricket, but nobody expected him to play anyway. Barring a major injury crisis or a need to play 4 seamers he's here to continue his slow rehabilitation and as a show of loyalty to him. Anderson, Broad and Finn will be a handful for anyone - they were certainly too much for Australia and Finn has put on some pace and improved his accuracy since. I think, unlucky as he'll be, Tremlett will miss out. Morgan excepted, all the batsmen have had some time in the middle. Hopefully Strauss and Trott we get their 50s tomorrow and England will push on for a declaration. One thing that is clear is that by the time that the ball is 50 overs old batting becomes a lot easier, so the two spinners will be useful to give control and rest the seamers. Until the late slog Swann had hardly conceded a run and was building the pressure for Monty to take the wickets at the other end. Certainly they seemed to bowl very well together today.

  • SirViv1973 on January 12, 2012, 23:02 GMT

    @Khan1983, Hello mate how are you ? Not long to wait now until the serious stuff starts. I think you maybe reading a little to much in to this game. Don't expect Eng to go for the win tomorrow it will just be a case of giving the batsmen as much time in the middle as poss. In my view the only way we will see a result is if PCB Xi knock Eng over by mid afternoon and then Eng roll them over in 40 - 45 overs. Along with several of my Barmy Army colleagues I don't think there is any real prospect of Eng going with 2 spinners. If Bresnan was around and Morgan failed again tomorrow then Flower may have given it some thought but not now, despite how well Monty did today. I don't think you should write Swann off just yet 153 wickets @28.8 is a pretty good return (had to throw that in as I know how much you love my stats)

  • JG2704 on January 12, 2012, 22:41 GMT

    Agree with SirViv on what will happen , but I'd like to see them be more adventurous and go for a 5 man bowling attack. Yes I know I'm repeating myself but I feel whoever the extra bowler is will likely do more for England's cause with the ball than Morgan would do with the bat. I don't think anyone would argue with the top 5 justifying their places even if KP and Bell haven't got started so far on this tour but I do feel that our bowling unit is our strength and that a 5 man attack (3 pacemen + Monty and Swann) or (4 pacemen + Monty or Swann) depending on the pitch would be awesome. Trott and Strauss have made a better start in the 2nd inns also. Obviously this is still a step down from the full Pak side but one balanced Pak fan said this was a decent side

  • jmcilhinney on January 12, 2012, 22:01 GMT

    Good move to open with Trott. I'd like to see both opebers make 50 and then retire to get Bell and Pietersen in the middle and then them do the same for Moran and Prior, leaving a session or one and a half to bowl again. Good sporting declaration by PCB but I think England need to bat long enough to give at least those 6 some time so, if they all bat well, the game will likely be drawn. Given Trott's performance here you would have to say that these warmups have served their purpose exactly. He started poorly in unfamiliar conditions and after a layoff and now he seems to be hitting his stride. Let's hope Bell and Morgan in particular can do the same. There's lots of talk about team makeup but, while I don't necessarily disagree, I think we'll a familiar lineup, at least for the first test, with Tremlett the third seamer.

  • RandyOZ on January 12, 2012, 22:00 GMT

    Well I think there are a few things to be gathered from this game. Onions is rubbish and went at almost double anyone else for 1 wicket (the backup bowlers really are thin in England) and Monty, who we all though had his career ended by Gilly, was far better than Graeme Swann, not that that's a difficult feat.

  • jmcilhinney on January 12, 2012, 21:55 GMT

    Decent bowling performance from England although disappointing they couldn't clean up the tail. Congrats to Talha and particularly Hasan for some stern resistance. Onions was a bit expensive but created chances, although he is unlikely to see test duty anyway. Tremlett was ecomomical and threatening so may have just pipped Finn. Monty obviously looked good which is good for the SL and India tours even if he doesn't get a game here. Swann is the obvious concern. I don't believe that he is over-rated because his rating is based on actual past performances. His recent performance has not been great though. Not sure what the problem is but England need him firing on all cylinders if they are to be successful over these winter tours of UAE and subcontinent.

  • phoenixsteve on January 12, 2012, 21:41 GMT

    Assuming Broad is going to play, the question England have to ask is 'can Broad bat at number 7?'. I think that they should give him a chance & my England Xi would be Strauss, Cooke, Trott, Pieterson, Bell, Prior, Broad, Swann, Onions, Tremlett or Finn, Panesar. It's not as though Morgan has been a huge success & is in a rich vein of form & it's conceivable that if there is another batting failure he could bag a pair? The more decisive option would be to play 2 spinners & if we find we are bowling first with a little in the pitch I believe Broad, Onions and Tremlett (or Finn) can cause problems. Swann is worth the number 8 spot and the all rounders in Broad and Prior are useful players. The wicket is likely to be batsman friendly & so a stronger bowling attack is needed. Theoretically England should have enough to blow through Pakistan with these 5 - but time will tell? Should be a great series and a great advertisement for test cricket - the purest form of the game! COME ON ENGLAND!!!

  • on January 12, 2012, 21:22 GMT

    If Bresnan was still fit I think it would be plausible that the management would opt for the 5 bowler attack. With him sidelined however, it seems pretty unlikely now. The England side originally consisted of 7 genuine batsman, 3 bowling all rounders and a tail ender. In that XI, there was scope to drop Morgan and bring in a 2nd spinner. With Bresnan injured that move is far more risky as batting depth would suffer as a result with 6 batsman, 2 bowling all-rounders and three tailenders. It would be quite astonishing if management went for this option in the very first match of the series.

  • on January 12, 2012, 21:00 GMT

    Spence1324 I think its probably more a quality left armer... no history lesson from me but I would say that Pakistan have played a lot of spin as of late... sl, bd and zim are mainly that.... although if I was going for one spinner it would be Monty...

  • Khan1983 on January 12, 2012, 20:47 GMT

    @Whisperofdeath,it was a strange day play,second session started with alot of grip & spin esp for monty. Swan was his usual average self though, and then when hassan and yasir started, pitch eased out again and later strauss and cook batted easily too. Maybe an undercooked pitch that isn't supposed to be used for 6 days of cricket. But this may fool English to include extra spinner at the expense of depleting a middle order which is already very much out-of-sorts in these conditions :)

  • Optic on January 12, 2012, 20:40 GMT

    I just don't see this need from some England fans for the call for 5 bowlers, even when we were in England and Australia the same noises are always heard for some reason. It's even more ridiculous after the success the four man attack has had, with teams barely being able to get over 300 most times. I know UAE is different but still when you look at the stats, quicks take there wicket at the similar rate as spinners in the UAE, so it's not as if this place has a history of being spinners paradises. I think England will go in with the same balanced side as they have the past couple of years, although this has been changed a bit by Bresnan's injury. The only way they could have gone the 5 bowler route, is if someone like Samit or Woakes had been there to play the allrounder role and bat 7, so we could have played 5 bowlers. Playing 5 bowlers would mean Broad playing at 7, where he'd have nose bleed tbh, then having a tail of Swann, Jimmy, Tremlett and Monty.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 12, 2012, 20:25 GMT

    Tigg, my thinking too. I suspect that Finn will get the nod over Tremlett because of his performances in India. Morgan is running out of time to convince me that he is a genuine Test #6. He averages 36.4 after 13 Tests (18 innings, with 7 in single figures and no less than 3 ducks), which is not enough in my book. Tim Bresnan averages 45 (!!) after 10 Tests, albeit he has only batted 8 times (a measure of how easily England have been winning). In the end it will come down to who is more likely to win England a Test: Morgan or Panesar? Monty has done the hard yards. He switched to a county in Division 1 where he has had to earn his wickets and he looks better for it. Morgan doesn't give confidence although 5 of the 11 times that he has got a start he has hit 70+. Dravid, hyping a spinner? No Australian or Indian would ever do that! You are right though, his impact is waning, perhaps because batsmen are beginning to read him and teams have been basing their tactics around stopping him!!

  • Trickstar on January 12, 2012, 20:24 GMT

    There's no chance imo they will go with 2 spinners or play 5 bowlers, they'll go with 4 bowlers and Morgan. especially in the first test. The only way that could change is if England are not ahead in the series or Morgan has a stinker. With Bresnan missing I just can't see them going the 5 bowler way, it leaves a tail like a rat, with Monty ,Jimmy and Tremlett. The won't go in with only 2 seamers and 2 spinners, no way, far too risky.

  • Trickstar on January 12, 2012, 20:18 GMT

    @Nutcutlet Let me get this straight, you think that of Swann was a poor fielder and batman , Monty would be ahead of him, LOL I seriously can't see how you can come to that conclusion, even if he has added a bit to his game. Yes Swann may have not been in as great form as the previous year but the 3 times he was asked to win England a game recently he did, against Australia, India and Sri Lanka, he took the team to victory in the 4th innings. Lets be honest with how the pacemen have bowled, he's hardly been needed has he, and when he has he's done the business. People have been a bit unfair about Swann I believe, at the end of the day the past year or so he's played in Australia where offies have rarely had success and played India who are brilliant against spin but when he was offered a pitch with a bit of spin he got 9 wickets. If by the end of this series he's bowled poorly then we should start to ask questions and if he bowls as well as he did last time he should be alright.

  • Lmaotsetung on January 12, 2012, 20:06 GMT

    I'm sure Monty would walk into any Test side atm. We are stocked with spinners as well as seamers. Just the batting is light as we have no immediate replacement if any of the top 6 goes down. Bopara has been disappointed so far in his career. With Bresnan out, I don't think Eng can afford to play a 5th bowler and since we have no genuine all-rounder like Flintoff,

  • 5wombats on January 12, 2012, 20:04 GMT

    Developing into quite an interesting game; albeit just a litttle friendly warm-up. It's interesting from the point of view of Monty's performance and how England took 7 wickets in the morning session! Very impressed with the way Monty is staking his claim. It might work? Pretty tidy from the big fella too. We think Tremlett is outstanding! England have got that presence on the field and Lurch embodies it; scarry! It was too much for Australia, who cracked. India were lucky they hardly saw him due to injury. Got selection problems with the bowling now. @spence1324 - maybe we will go with 2 spinners. Be a surprise, but maybe they are looking at it. Ease off on that other chap; he's on a high ledge and we're trying to talk him down! Pakistan fans are great; they see the funny side of this the same as we do! @phoenixsteve - hey mate! Big Up Ashes Crew! We agree; not bad for a team with no spinners who can't play spin! It's all down to Saqlain Mushtaq; what a cricketer. Pakistani you see!

  • yorkshirematt on January 12, 2012, 19:58 GMT

    For me, not going with two spinners would be like Australia not picking a single spinner for the Oval test in 2009. Although I suppose they'll need to look at the wicket first. Morgan hasn't done it for me so far anyway and i think england can afford to drop him and instead take the risk of picking five bowlers.

  • SirViv1973 on January 12, 2012, 19:52 GMT

    @edd Oliver, I think Eng success over the past couple of years has been based on the 7 batsmen, 3 seamers and 1 spinner and I don't see that changing here. I think the Xi that played the associates with the exception of Steven Davies for Prior will play the first test. I don't think Flower is a fan of 5 bowlers, I could be wrong but I think he feels that if you he played 5 bowlers one of them wouldn't end up bowling too much so he would rather play the extra batsmen. I feel Monty and Swann are really only competing for the one spot. Although I am certain Swann will start the first test I think his lack of wickets so far on the tour & Monty's performance today as put him under some pressure.

  • cricket_fan_1980 on January 12, 2012, 19:27 GMT

    Monty should play. 2 spinners and 3 pacemen will work much better against Pakistan than 4 pacemen or 3 pacemen and an extra batsman. Curious to see what the ECB go with ...

  • Whisperofdeath on January 12, 2012, 18:32 GMT

    So, none of the Player in PCB XI score decent run. NasirJamshed and other piles run in our first class cricket but when the chance comes in to show capabilities. They are an average player. None of them deserve to be in Pakistan XI.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on January 12, 2012, 18:31 GMT

    Well bowled Monty. Well played Cook. Much needed time in the middle. Trott, Bell and KP still not in the rhythm. But you can't keep these three quiet for too long. As usual Swann is struggling to pick-up wickets. My feeling that he is a hyped bowler is getting stronger by the day. Did he kick the stumps in this match again out of frustration?

  • phoenixsteve on January 12, 2012, 18:20 GMT

    What's this? Spinners dominating an England vs Pakistan game ... surely not! Furthermore these spinners are English... what is the world coming to? For me it's a case of whoever scores 400+ in the first innings will likely win the test. Nothing new there then...... COME ON ENGLAND!!!

  • on January 12, 2012, 17:59 GMT

    Would love to see England show a bit of adventure and go in with Strauss*, Cook, Trott, Pietersen, Bell, Prior+, Broad, Swann, Anderson, Panesar, Tremlett. Here's betting that they'll play Morgan as the 6th batsman though and Monty will be carrying the drinks for at least the 1st test.

  • Nutcutlet on January 12, 2012, 17:44 GMT

    Thank you to the anonymous member of the ESPNcricinfo staff who wrote this; your report contains relevant and interesting detail that cannot be deduced from the scorecard. Your work is much appreciated by the old Nutcutlet! More of the same, please! As to the match itself, I feel that it will take a change in the England selectors' heart (or possibly a poor performance by one of the first-pick bowlers in the first test) for Monty to get selected for the second, although he certainly deserves recognition on this showing. The criticism of his bowling has been that it has been metronomic, but as he has now introduced some 'pleasing variation' it shows that he is likely to be a more potent force at the highest level. Were Swann not a better bat and field, then Panesar would have the spinner's berth, but if there's any justice in these matters, his time will come - again!

  • on January 12, 2012, 17:31 GMT

    As far as Monty putting up his stake for the test slot is not so material as far as this series is concerned, because in any case both the spinners would be played the series. Both the Teams are expected to go into the series with two spinners.

  • Snick_To_Backward_Point on January 12, 2012, 17:17 GMT

    I'd definitely give Monty the nod and play 2 spinners next week. I know this leaves a bit of a connundrum over the top 6 but if the pitches are likely to take spin it would be crazy not to don;t you think? Better perfomance today (relieved actually) I thought England had gone off the boil somewhat towards the end of last season and they may just be clearing their heads now.

  • Trickstar on January 12, 2012, 16:45 GMT

    Good day by England and well done to Monty, just noticed you've put Swann bowled 29 overs he didn't, he bowled 21, Panesar bowled 29.

  • Stark62 on January 12, 2012, 16:40 GMT

    This definitely has shown that Eng will go in favourites for the Test series!

    I gave them 60% chance of winning the Test series before but I'll increase that to 75% after seeing this performance.

    But I think Eng will be beaten 3-1 or 4-0 in the ODI series with the T20's as 50/50.

  • spence1324 on January 12, 2012, 16:29 GMT

    @5wombats its a sealed deal for me we need to go in with 2 spinners because im not convinced pakistan can play spin that well.If that means dropping a batsman(morgen)then thats the way we need to go.Panser the in form spinner needs to play.Anyone seen @khan1983 ready to give us another silly history lesson i suppose ha ha.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 12, 2012, 16:27 GMT

    Interesting that England have played the two spinners in this game and it has worked well. Without Bresnan's batting the tail inevitably gets a bit longer as he is playing almost as an all-rounder now while his likely replacement (Finn or Tremlett is a genuine number 11) and to introduce Monty is to add another rabbit but, just possibly 2 spinners will be the way to go, in which case, would they risk going in with only two seamers? I doubt it! Could it be that the last place in the side will be between Morgan and Panesar, with England picking the spinner if they see the prospect of turn?

  • on January 12, 2012, 16:22 GMT

    England may need to consider two spinners!... what is it with left arm spinners?

  • godimbored on January 12, 2012, 16:20 GMT

    If Pakistan, as seems likely, will field 3 spinners and have first-hand knowledge of the conditions then England really should look to play Monty and Swann, especially in view of Monty's excellent contribution in the 1st innings.

  • Tigg on January 12, 2012, 16:15 GMT

    If Morgan doesn't get runs this innings there's a strong case for playing: Strauss, Cook, Trott, KP, Bell, Prior, Broad, Swann, Anderson, Panesar, Tremlett/Finn.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • Tigg on January 12, 2012, 16:15 GMT

    If Morgan doesn't get runs this innings there's a strong case for playing: Strauss, Cook, Trott, KP, Bell, Prior, Broad, Swann, Anderson, Panesar, Tremlett/Finn.

  • godimbored on January 12, 2012, 16:20 GMT

    If Pakistan, as seems likely, will field 3 spinners and have first-hand knowledge of the conditions then England really should look to play Monty and Swann, especially in view of Monty's excellent contribution in the 1st innings.

  • on January 12, 2012, 16:22 GMT

    England may need to consider two spinners!... what is it with left arm spinners?

  • CricketingStargazer on January 12, 2012, 16:27 GMT

    Interesting that England have played the two spinners in this game and it has worked well. Without Bresnan's batting the tail inevitably gets a bit longer as he is playing almost as an all-rounder now while his likely replacement (Finn or Tremlett is a genuine number 11) and to introduce Monty is to add another rabbit but, just possibly 2 spinners will be the way to go, in which case, would they risk going in with only two seamers? I doubt it! Could it be that the last place in the side will be between Morgan and Panesar, with England picking the spinner if they see the prospect of turn?

  • spence1324 on January 12, 2012, 16:29 GMT

    @5wombats its a sealed deal for me we need to go in with 2 spinners because im not convinced pakistan can play spin that well.If that means dropping a batsman(morgen)then thats the way we need to go.Panser the in form spinner needs to play.Anyone seen @khan1983 ready to give us another silly history lesson i suppose ha ha.

  • Stark62 on January 12, 2012, 16:40 GMT

    This definitely has shown that Eng will go in favourites for the Test series!

    I gave them 60% chance of winning the Test series before but I'll increase that to 75% after seeing this performance.

    But I think Eng will be beaten 3-1 or 4-0 in the ODI series with the T20's as 50/50.

  • Trickstar on January 12, 2012, 16:45 GMT

    Good day by England and well done to Monty, just noticed you've put Swann bowled 29 overs he didn't, he bowled 21, Panesar bowled 29.

  • Snick_To_Backward_Point on January 12, 2012, 17:17 GMT

    I'd definitely give Monty the nod and play 2 spinners next week. I know this leaves a bit of a connundrum over the top 6 but if the pitches are likely to take spin it would be crazy not to don;t you think? Better perfomance today (relieved actually) I thought England had gone off the boil somewhat towards the end of last season and they may just be clearing their heads now.

  • on January 12, 2012, 17:31 GMT

    As far as Monty putting up his stake for the test slot is not so material as far as this series is concerned, because in any case both the spinners would be played the series. Both the Teams are expected to go into the series with two spinners.

  • Nutcutlet on January 12, 2012, 17:44 GMT

    Thank you to the anonymous member of the ESPNcricinfo staff who wrote this; your report contains relevant and interesting detail that cannot be deduced from the scorecard. Your work is much appreciated by the old Nutcutlet! More of the same, please! As to the match itself, I feel that it will take a change in the England selectors' heart (or possibly a poor performance by one of the first-pick bowlers in the first test) for Monty to get selected for the second, although he certainly deserves recognition on this showing. The criticism of his bowling has been that it has been metronomic, but as he has now introduced some 'pleasing variation' it shows that he is likely to be a more potent force at the highest level. Were Swann not a better bat and field, then Panesar would have the spinner's berth, but if there's any justice in these matters, his time will come - again!