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Cook piles on the runs against Pakistan

 Agencies |  2016-07-26 00:59:01.0  |  Manchester

England captain Alastair Cook left Pakistan needing to rewrite the record books if they were to win the second Test at Old Trafford, after opting against enforcing the follow-on on Monday. At stumps, England, looking to level the four-Test series at 1-1, were 98 for one in their second innings.

That gave them a lead of 489 runs, with no side having made more in the fourth innings to win a Test than the West Indies’ 418 for seven against Australia at St John’s in 2002/03.

Cook, who made a first innings hundred, was 49 not out and vice-captain Joe Root, whose 254 in the same innings was his Test-best score, unbeaten on 23. Shortly before the close, which took place in bright sunshine, England lost Alex Hales (24) when the opener was caught behind off Mohammad Amir. Pakistan were dismissed for just 198 in reply to England’s 589 for eight declared —a huge deficit of 391 runs. Yet Cook, on a day where four rain interruptions caused 27 overs to be lost, decided to bat again. That reduced the time England had to bowl Pakistan out again, although there were, in fairness, still more than two days remaining in the match. Pakistan’s first innings saw England pace-bowling all-rounder Chris Woakes take four for 67, while Root held four catches at second slip.

Misbah-ul-Haq, the Pakistan captain, top-scored for his side with 52 and shared a ninth-wicket stand of 60 with Wahab Riaz, who made a Test-best 39. Pakistan, who resumed on 57 for four, saw their first-innings collapse continue in Sunday’s morning session as they lost a further four wickets for 62 runs. But with Cook opting against using experienced paceman James Anderson and Stuart Broad after lunch. 

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