Alastair Cook, Mark Stoneman holders of a dubious record

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Manish Pathak

What’s the story?

England's batting woes continue to haunt them against Pakistan and now their opening partnership is under the scanner.

Alastair Cook and Mark Stoneman have become the holders of statistically the country’s worst-ever opening partnership.

After their failure in the second innings, Cook and Stoneman now average 18.75 for the first wicket. This number comes to the fore for pairs who have batted at least 20 times together.

The details

Cook and Stoneman have gone past Cook and Hales for this record low average by an English duo. Along with Hales, Cook average 34.20 which is almost double than the current duo.

England have struggled against Pakistan in the ongoing Test match and their first wicket has only managed to add 12 and 1 in the two innings which has exposed the middle order to the new ball.

Cook and Stoneman have not gone past 35 since the Adelaide Ashes Test match and this is a huge worry for England going into the summer.

In case you didn’t know…

Former England skipper, Michael Vaughan has come down hard on England and have questioned their entire selection process.

"The top order, there’s just no solidarity, there’s no consistent way that they play. They seem to always find ways of getting out. Once they lose one wicket it’s like a little disease that runs through that dressing room and they’re going to lose two, three and four (wickets) really quickly," Vaughan has said.

The hosts are facing an uphill task against Pakistan in the first Test at Lord's where they were skittled out for 184 in their first innings and then fell behind in the Test match when Pakistan posted 363 in their first dig.

What’s next?

England need to rejig their entire setup, but few heads will roll after this one match and perhaps if players do not raise their hands and perform in the second Test, there might be changes made for the India series.

Author’s take

Joe Root has been facing a tough task as the captain of the England Test side ever since the Ashes and this home summer has not got off to a bright start.

He needs to sit down and identify roles for different players and can well ask the selectors for players he believes can get the job done over the summer.

Edited by Amar Anand


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