Pakistan became the first team to score 340-plus totals in three consecutive 50-over matches during the fourth ODI against England in Nottingham. And a few hours later, England became the second. After the first ODI was washed out, Pakistan have gone on to score 361/7, 358/9 and 340/7 in the subsequent matches.
Unfortunately for them, in all three instances they’ve ended up losing. With the loss on Friday (May 17), England took an unbeatable 3-0 lead in the five match series. In so doing, England have scored 373/3, 359/4 and 341/7 in the second, third and fourth ODIs respectively.
In the second ODI at Southampton, England won by 12 runs; in 3rd ODI at Bristol, England won by 6 wickets and then in the fourth ODI in Nottingham, the hosts triumphed by 3 wickets.
Pakistan failed to capitalise on Babar Azam’s century as they were held to a total of 340/7 by World Cup hosts England.
With England naming their final 15-man World Cup squad on Tuesday, Tom Curran did his selection prospects no harm with four wickets for 75 runs in a maximum 10 overs.
At one point during the Pakistan innings, they were 178/1 after 30 overs and England looked to be headed for a stiff chase. But the innings fell away following century stand between Babar, who made 115, and Mohammad Hafeez (59).
Pakistan’s cause was not helped, when Imam-ul-Haq, fresh from his career-best 151 during England’s six-wicket win in Tuesday’s third ODI in Bristol, had to retire hurt after missing an intended pull of an 89 mph ball from fast bowler Mark Wood that hit him on the elbow. The fears were eased when he came back to bat later on.
Following Imam’s initial exit, Babar and Fakhar Zamam went on the attack. Babar’s fifty came off 49 balls, Fakhar’s off 44.
Fakhar fell for 57 when, trying to drive Curran through the covers, he sliced the ball to Wood at third man.
Hafeez went to fifty at better than a run-a-ball before, on 59, he pulled Wood to mid-on.
Babar’s 10th boundary, a leg-glance off Ben Stokes, took him to his ninth hundred in 63 ODIs, and first against England, in 104 balls.
In reply, Jason Roy smashed 114 and Ben Stokes finished on 71 not out as England chased down the target with three deliveries to spare.
Roy’s partnerships with James Vince (43) and Joe Root (36) helped England to 201/1 before the opener’s departure saw the hosts collapse to 216/5 – with ducks for Jos Buttler and Moeen Ali.
Stokes got England over the winning line, though, pacing the chase to perfection in the final overs with Curran also weighing in with an important 31 off 36 balls.