Fifth Test Match

England v Pakistan

England won by ten wickets at ten minutes to one on Monday with more than a day to spare. It was England's fourth victory in the series and only at Trent Bridge did Pakistan manage to avoid defeat when the weather interfered considerably with the cricket.

For this match the England selectors made six changes, mainly to give some players a chance and also to avoid calling too heavily on counties engaged in the fight for the Championship.

They brought in Cowdrey, Barrington, Allen, Illingworth, Coldwell and Larter for Graveney, Lock, Trueman, Statham, Titmus and Pullar, the Lancashire left-hander not being considered owing to a doubt about his fitness.

The match proved a triumph for the three England amateur batsmen, Sheppard, Cowdrey and Dexter, and for Larter who marked his first Test appearance by taking nine wickets for 145 runs. For Pakistan, Imtiaz and Mushtaq batted splendidly in both innings, but once again their bowlers suffered heavy punishment.

From a sedate beginning which yielded only 76 in two hours before lunch after Dexter had won the toss, England made 406 for the loss of only two wickets on the first day. They put on 330 runs in the four hours after lunch and actually helped themselves to 95 in the hour following the tea interval.

Again Pakistan relied on only two seam bowlers so that a tremendous amount of work fell on Fazal and D'Souza. Although he failed to take a wicket, Intikhab bowled his slows steadily and accurately.

Cowdrey and Sheppard gave England a sound start by participating in a stand of 117 and then Cowdrey and Dexter took complete charge, adding 248 in two and three-quarter hours. It was England's highest stand in any Test against Pakistan.

Cowdrey, second to leave at 365, hit one 6 and twenty-three 4's in his 182, his highest score in Test cricket. Not until he reached 141 did Cowdrey offer a chance and that was a sharp low one off Fazal to Wallis at slip.

Dexter gave a scintillating exhibition of driving, hitting five 6's and eighteen 4's. He was third to leave, bowled leg stump when trying yet another forcing stroke after spending only three and three-quarter hours for his 172. As soon as Barrington completed 50 England declared for the third time in the rubber with only five wickets down.

When Pakistan went in chief interest centred on Larter and he had the satisfaction of taking his first Test wicket with the fifth ball of his second over, Cowdrey making a splendid low catch at first slip from Butt.

Standing six feet, seven and a half inches, Larter approached the crease with ten easy strides in a run of twenty yards. He maintained control over his length and direction and mixed his pace, putting the occasional ball down with some haste. It was a docile pitch, as the Pakistan bowlers had discovered, and at no time did it give any help to the bowlers, although Illingworth on the third day managed a freak off-break which surprised and bowled Mushtaq.

Dexter conserved Larter's energy by using him in short spells. In his third spell Larter broke a second wicket stand of 82 by getting Mushtaq leg-before and afterwards Hanif alone offered much resistance. The last four Pakistan wickets fell first thing on Saturday for the addition of only eight runs and the touring team followed-on 297 behind.

Soon Butt went for an impossible run when Imtiaz turned Illingworth to Allen at short fine leg, but England had to wait two and a half hours for their next success while Imtiaz and Mushtaq put on 137 in a splendid stand. Mushtaq hit thirteen 4's in his excellent 72.

Imtiaz seemed set for his first century against England when, attempting a drive to take him into three figures, he provided a sharp catch for Cowdrey at slip. Imtiaz batted just over three and a half hours and hit ten 4's.

Subsequently, only Burki and Wallis really troubled the England bowlers and Pakistan finished the third day with their total 289 for six; Wallis 43, Nasim 17.

Any hope of a prolonged fight on Monday vanished in the first over when Wallis, backing up too far, was run out by Larter from mid-on and England, in the end, needed only 27 to win. The estimated attendance for the whole match was 40,000.

© John Wisden & Co