Pakistan vs England Test series 2015: Six things we learned
Pakistan move to second in the ICC Test rankings with the 2-0 winPakistan are still unbeaten in their adopted home of Dubai after defeating England 2-0 in their recent three-Test series, meaning the visitors fall from third to sixth in the world rankings.The hosts were saved from defeat only by light during the first Test in Abu Dhabi, which looked like a high-scoring draw until suddenly building to a frenetic crescendo.The second Test saw Pakistan take the lead through a 178-run win despite a defiant reargaurd from the visitors, before their hosts secured the series in Sharjah with victory by 127 runs.England have now lost seven of their past nine Test matches away to Pakistan, and are without a series victory abroad for three years, but were competitive aside for all but two poor session in the series, during the last two fixtures.Here is a Misbah-ul-Haq-maximum-against-an-English-spinners worth of notable aspects from the series.
#1 England\'s opening saga continues
Even more tedious than Renee Zellwegger’s search for love in the Bridget Jones series, England skipper Alistair Cook still has not found his opening partner, almost four years since Andrew Struass retired.
Captain Cook needs to find his Mark Darcy, and sadly Mooen Ali is not it.
Ali scored just 84 runs at an average of 14 during the series, meaning England are back on the internet dating sites, again.
A return to the counter-attacking lower-order role where he had a successful 2015 Ashes beckons, where he can score quickly and change the momentum of an innings.
It is easy to say that Alex Hales, who averaged over 50 in red-ball cricket for Nottinghamshire last summer, should have played, but Ali offered another bowling option and is perceived as a better player of spin.
Now Hales, ranked 3rd in the ICC T20 batting rankings, will probably get a chance on England’s trip to South Africa to show his ability in Tests but this saga appears far from over.
PS: Opener Nick Compton had another consistent season in county cricket last summer opening for Middlesex, including 149 against champions Yorkshire.
Compton scored two Test hundreds during his first opportunity and was harshly dropped after just four low scores against New Zealand in 2013, so don’t rule out a fairytale England return for him that even Zellwegger would be proud of.