9.03pm Well, it was nice of them not to drag it out to the bitter end. It was fun while it lasted, but as with most nice things in 2020, it all ended rather abruptly.
Anyway, let's try again on Sunday. An afternoon game, whether that helps or not remains to be seen. And an emotional return of international men's cricket to the BBC after a 21-year absence. See you at 2pm for more fun and frolics. But from Alan, Miller and Thilak, and George in the bubble, good night!
9pm Right, it's getting to the crunch moment. What's the status, George Dobell? Match abandoned!
"With huge regret the umpires have just called off the match," says the ECB's man in the bubble Danny Reuben. "The outfield is just too wet to get the game back on." Boo
8.46pm: Aashish Calla: "I've always believed that a T20 match shouldn't ever be reduced. It should be either 20-20 overs each, or nothing. Anything shorter becomes a farce, doesn't it? Thoughts?" Personally I thought timeless Tests should never have been reduced, but I guess, at a pinch, the five-day game has retained its integrity
Sajid Khan: "I wish bio-secure bubble is like invisible bubble over ground just like in movie Black Panther." Now that's next-level thinking. Make it so!
Navneet Kumar: "It's 01:25 am in India and I want to go bed. But heart says it will be fun to see a 5 over chase - thus waiting. Why can't umpire go to check things a little early and confirm if at all there will be a chase? Can someone please request them?" Let me put in a call ... either way, we'll know for sure in about 20 minutes' time
Stuart : "This summer has been like an episode of 90s TV dystopia, Crystal Maze . Instead of an accountant from Oxforshire leaping around in a tragic bolier suit screaming "Get the crystal, get the crystal!", we've got millions of bored cricket fans in tracksuit bottoms screaming "Get the covers off, get the covers off!"."
8.39pm: "It's stopped raining!" declares George Dobell ... well, well. The race against time begins ... it'll take 30 minutes to get the ground playable, and that's assuming no more rain. One more cloudburst could be curtains, but at the moment, there's a chance ...
The covers are coming off, and the soppers are out. The umpires are taking stock ... tick tock ...
Kashif : "Sometimes I feel bad weather hates cricket " Bad weather hates everyone equally. A bit like my cat. It's nothing personal
Ramesh Kumar: "Why the hell they cant cover whole ground? Even if rain stops, they need 30 mins more to clean the water.. That is absolute waste of time..!!"
8.29pm: Tom Banton is speaking to the media now, so that's an indication of where the England camp think this camp has got to. Meanwhile we sit and wait for the last rites, whatever form they take...
8.20pm: The groundstaff were out in the middle having a bit of a mop-up, but they've given up now. We need to be back on by 9.19pm for a 5-over chase, and a target of 56...
8.15pm: Evening all. Well, isn't this fun? The official end of England's innings came at 8.01pm, so we are now eating into Pakistan's reply too. The DLS-adjusted target for a 16-over chase would be 144... but at this rate we'll be happy to get a five-over thrash ...
8.05pm: We are now officially losing overs. "Quite pretty really," says George, alongside a picture of the Manchester skyline. "But wet." On that note, here's Andrew Miller once again, ready and rock'n'roll never mind the rain
7.55pm: "Blotters out," says George, a little mournfully. Looks to be drumming down steadily again. Suspect we're looking at curtains for the England innings pretty soon now
"Just a reminder it's not raining in Southampton," chuckles Mustafa Aziz
"I was reading the article on 'haal and Pakistan cricket' by Osman Samiuddin from 2013 while watching the England innings. The way this innings unfolded so far, will the experts call it a 'haal' yet or does the match have to end up in a Pakistan win for the term to come into light?" Not sure about the qualification process, Naseef - but this week's Rabbit Hole was on the very same subject
"With due respect to his skills and ability-can anyone explain me- how could Joe Root be in so-called 'Fab 4' if he isn't good enough in all three formats of the game despite ageing below 30?" Dunno about that, Mustafa Amin. His Test average is (currently) below 50, but he betters both Smith and Williamson on ODI and T20I stats. Is this really a comment about Babar, eh...?
7.48pm: Don't think it's raining too heavily, the ground staff and fourth umpire are standing out in the middle with an umbrella between them. But no moves to take off the covers, either
Here's Rebel Sayed: "Pakistan played their first T20I match in Bristol on 28 August 2006 (exactly 14 years back)against England. Shoaib and Hafeez were in the squad then and they are here today as well." That they did, and Shahid Afridi was MotM. Time for him to come out of retirement again surely?
7.40pm: Still pelting down at Old Trafford, despite George's optimism. Another 10 minutes or so and we'll be losing overs
"Rizwan to Shadab just before Moeen's wicket "Urdu mein mat bolna ic ko smajh aati hai." (Don't speak In Urdu, he can understand us)." Yes, Mubashir, Danyal mentioned that on our group chat. No good Moeen speaking the lingo if he can't read it out of the hand, though...
7.30pm: George Dobell is looking on the positive side right now: "I don't think this will be an especially long delay. Weather behind The Point, where it comes from, looks okay." Tom Banton is talking in the Sky diary room, he said there was some "tennis-ball bounce" to contend with and reckons 170-80 would be a good score - so England looking a little way short
Here's Taha with the silver lining: "Just saw the weather forecast and guess what, it's cloudy with sunshine at 11"
7.25pm: From the sounds of the forecast, this could be a lengthy interruption, and quite possibly the end of England's innings. They were rather limping towards 150, but you'd think DLS won't do them too many favours, if it is called upon...
We have half an hour before it starts cutting into the overs. But the covers are on the square and run-ups and the weather looks bleak. Again. Gah!
"How much target will pakistan team chase?... If England's innings summed up here.. " We've just been looking at that, Aqeel. Seems like it would be 144
"Hey Alan I already told you but you denied to post it. I am sure that Flintoff will be the only bowler to have two deliveries in the ball of the Century and both being written by you." Think you can trick me that easily, Lidwin? I can only confirm that I wrote this
ABAE: "Rizwan is said to have been picked as he is the best keeper of the three options (other two are Haider Ali and Sarfaraz). He's done well to make his case with the stumping and rebound catch." Another one we were discussing on Switch
And the weather has won this battle, the players and officials are heading off. Been drizzling persistently for a while now. On comes the hover cover, soon to be followed by the rest of the tarps, it seems. Sadly we're in for *drum roll* a delay
"I just popped in and no one seems bothered about the David Willey isn't playing today, not even a mention," hollers Shashank. "He'll get into the team as a bowler alone on most days but needs more opportunities"
Groundstaff hovering with intent. But on we go, Mohammad Amir back into the attack
Chris Jordan is in at No. 8. Animated discussion between Babar and umpire Wharf... but still they are staying out
Last five overs, Imad Wasim to bowl one of them
Bit of rain in the air still, though it looks like it might be passing through
Lewis Gregory heads out for his fourth T20I innings
Suggestion of rain in the air now, as Sam Billings jogs out
"Pushkaraj got this first jinx wicket!" yips vishu. "Congrats dude"