Will Jacks: Wicket of Babar Azam could be a game-changing moment for England
Will Jacks believes taking the wicket of Pakistan captain Babar Azam could prove a “game-changing” moment for England as they look to claim victory in the first Test.
England took four wickets in the final session as the hosts slipped to 499 for seven at the end of day three in Rawalpindi.
The tourists toiled in the field throughout the afternoon but persevered, and Jacks finished the day with three for 132 from 32 overs in his maiden Test match.
Despite having scored a masterful century before tea, Babar’s innings came to an end when he cut Jacks straight to point.
It was the first sign of any spin in the track and brought new life to England’s bowling attack as Pakistan lost four wickets for just 88 runs in the final session.
All-rounder Jacks believes it could prove a pivotal moment, and said: “(I was in) a bit of disbelief really. It was the first ball of my spell, probably a bit of a loosener outside off and he cut it to point.
“(I’m) pretty happy, it was almost a game-changing moment. If we go on to win this Test then I guess that could be seen as a big moment in the game to take that wicket of Babar and then (Mohammad) Rizwan the very next over and one more in the last hour.
“It finished up being a great day for us. Seven wickets in the day is very, very good, so we’ll be looking to get those three remaining wickets as quickly as possible in the morning and then give them a score to chase.”
Former captain Joe Root insisted England, who made 657 in their first innings, have no interest in seeing the game out for a draw, despite the flat track at Rawalpindi.
“With our team and the way we play our cricket we will be making sure we give ourselves a chance of winning the game,” Root told Sky Sports.
“We are not really interested in drawing the match. We want to give ourselves the best chance of winning it, and if Pakistan are good enough to beat us, then so be it.
“We have three big wickets to take tomorrow, then we will try to crash a few around and try to get to a reasonable total. There’s still a lot of entertaining cricket to play over the next two days.”
Imam-ul-Haq, who brought up a century of his own at the start of the day having opened the batting, believes there is still a way to go in the match.
“They bowled brilliantly in the last one-and-a-half hours and they were fighting hard, but you know there are still six sessions to go and the game can go either side,” Imam said.
“But we are looking for the next session on day four and it’s going to be really important how it goes and then we will see how it goes for the rest of the Test match.”
Matt Henry and Ben Green help Somerset keep perfect record
Umpire Sue Redfern wrote her name into the history books when she became the first female to officiate on-field in a Blast fixture.
Umpire Sue Redfern makes Blast history as Gloucestershire brush aside Middlesex
Redfern is the first female umpire to officiate on-field in a Vitality Blast fixture.
Joe Root cannot wait to perform in Ashes without burden of captaincy
Root has skippered England in the past three Ashes series, but hit 460 runs without the captaincy in 2015.
Huge blow for England with spinner Jack Leach ruled out of Ashes
Leach experienced low back symptoms during England’s win over Ireland at Lord’s.
Josh Hazlewood set to be fit for Ashes despite missing Test Championship final
The 32-year-old has been managing an Achilles issue as well as a side injury in recent months.
Josh Tongue impresses and Ben Duckett shows pedigree – 5 England things
Ben Stokes’ side beat Ireland inside three days but Australia will provide a much sterner test.
Ben Stokes plays down fitness fears after not batting or bowling against Ireland
England won by 10 wickets after being set 11 for victory.
Josh Tongue claims five on debut as England beat battling Ireland by 10 wickets
England made it 11 wins in 13 Tests under Ben Stokes’ and Brendon McCullum but endured a frustrating day at Lord’s.
Resistance of Ireland tail-enders ensures England must bat again at Lord’s
Debutant Josh Tongue claimed a five-wicket haul but Mark Adair and Andy McBrine hit fifties for dogged Ireland.
Harry Tector half-century helps Ireland hold up England victory charge at Lord’s
Josh Tongue, Jack Leach and Joe Root claimed wickets but Ireland made it through until lunch on day three.