England hung on for a tense draw in Faisalabad today to keep their three-Test series alive against Pakistan.
Michael Vaughan's men will be disappointed they can no longer register a seventh successive series victory but Andrew Flintoff and Kevin Pietersen ensured they head for the final match in Lahore next week with hope of eking out a 1-1 result.
Even that looked a distant prospect in early afternoon on the final day of this second Test as England lost three of their top four batsmen to ducks against the pace of Shoaib Akhtar and Rana Naved-ul-Hasan.
Their problems began thanks to Inzamam-ul-Haq (100no) who snuffed out all lingering hope of a last-day run chase for the tourists as he struck his second hundred of this match, putting himself out on his own ahead of Javed Miandad as his country's most prolific centurion - having now reached three figures 24 times.
Flintoff (56) and Pietersen came together with a disastrous 20 for four on the board after Inzamam's declaration on 268 for nine just before lunch had left England needing a notional 285 runs to win in a scheduled 64 overs - the second-highest target that would ever have been made in this country.
Pietersen profited from his habitual readiness to counter-attack, sharing a fifth-wicket stand of 80 with Flintoff only to fall just before the end of the second session when a bat-pad connection saw him loop a catch to short midwicket off the bowling of Rana (three for 30).
Flintoff completed a precious half-century shortly after tea. But he too could not quite see the job through, somehow propping a catch to gully off Shoaib (three for 61) from an intended pull shot.
It left Geraint Jones to defy Pakistan's last surge before lengthening evening shadows brought the early close England craved at 4.35pm - with a total of 164 for six on the board.
England's second innings was behind the eight ball from the outset once their most reliable batsman Marcus Trescothick lost his off stump, playing no shot to the pace and swing of Shoaib in a solitary over on the way to lunch - after Inzamam had declared as soon as he reached three figures.
Andrew Strauss could do no better, back when he might have been forward to a Rana delivery which kept devilishly low and was deflected on to the stumps via the bottom of the bat.
First-innings centurion Ian Bell was not the man to salvage the situation either, the third to go without scoring when he sparred a catch behind off Shoaib, and then captain Michael Vaughan went lbw pushing forward faultily at Rana.
Thankfully for England, Pietersen and Flintoff took their cue for a rescue act - the only anxious moment in their partnership coming with the South Africa-born batsman on 13 when his firm back-foot push at Mohammad Sami appeared for a split-second to have carried for a low return catch which the bowler quickly signalled he had not taken cleanly.
Inzamam this morning reached his century in 134 balls, having hit nine fours and one brutal blow for six off Stephen Harmison in an entirely assured innings which suffered only two blips - when he might have been lbw to Flintoff last night and when he should have been caught by Strauss today.
The able assistance of Shoaib was of huge benefit to Inzamam, the tailender reining in his attacking instincts as he ate up 60 balls off his own bat in a telling eighth-wicket stand which finally ended when he nibbled at a length delivery from Matthew Hoggard to give wicketkeeper Jones his third catch of the innings.
England, who resisted the availability of the second new ball, were already running out of time when Inzamam made a rare misjudgment against Shaun Udal on 79 only to be badly dropped on the deep midwicket boundary by Strauss.
The day had begun with the wicket of Rana, edging a catch behind off a Harmison outswinger, and Matthew Hoggard was to have Sami lbw pushing forward - but England could find no way past Inzamam.Reuse content