England 173 Pakistan 96-1: England given Ashes jolt by Pakistan pace attack

England talked a good game in the build-up to the fourth and final Test of the series against Pakistan. They spoke of the importance of maintaining their momentum before this winter's Ashes series and how the competition for places would bring out the best in them. But yesterday those words seemed rather empty as England were bowled out for 173 by a Pakistan side determined to finish the Test leg of the tour on a positive note.

With the series already won - and the tour of Australia fast approaching - it was inevitable that England would be slightly distracted, but their demise here was as much due to high-quality Pakistan bowling as their own poor batting.

Mohammad Asif, making his first appearance of the series, and Umar Gul shared eight wickets on a day when no England batsman passed 40. The overcast conditions were ideal for the pair to bowl in and England's total was their lowest since they were dismissed for 155 by Australia at Lord's 13 months ago.

England's bowlers were given the opportunity to exploit the conditions themselves as the shadows lengthened at the Oval, but the new ball was wasted by the profligate Matthew Hoggard and Stephen Harmison. Hoggard fired the ball down the leg-side while Harmison was cut so often by Imran Farhat that England must have been tempted to call for Henry Cooper's cornerman.

A knee injury caused Mohammad Hafeez to retire hurt with Pakistan on 35 for 0, and they had reached 70 before Younis Khan was "strangled" down the leg-side - caught by the wicketkeeper Chris Read off Sajid Mahmood. By the close the tourists had made a considerable dent into England's paltry total.

Inzamam-ul-Haq's decision to bowl after winning the toss in the morning surprised most of those who have bowled at this venue. Historically, the Oval pitch provides batsmen with an excellent surface on which to score runs but, even in the two deliveries that were bowled before the initial interruption for rain, it could be seen that the Pakistan captain had made the correct decision.

After a 30-minute delay the fit-again Asif, who missed the first three Tests with an elbow injury, and Gul seamed the ball around significantly as Marcus Trescothick and Andrew Strauss sought to protect their wickets. Strauss was by far the more comfortable of the England opening pair, leaving the ball whenever he could and moving confidently into position when playing it.

Initially, Asif and Gul failed to bowl the right length, pitching the ball fractionally short on too many occasions. It is a common fault among excitable fast bowlers when they are given good conditions in which to work. It looks good when the ball flies through to the wicketkeeper at head height, but when a ball is pitched too short it has often deviated more than it needs to by the time it reaches the batsman, missing rather than clipping the outside edge of his bat.

In an attempt to correct the error the pair searched for a fuller length, but Strauss drove them through the covers on each occasion they overpitched. Trescothick's footwork was far less convincing than that of his opening partner. Throughout the series his weight has been on the back foot and this has made him late on his forward strokes. It is a problem he needs to address before the winter.

Despite his lack of form, Trescothick battled on for more than an hour, but his vigil ended when he sliced a forcing shot at Gul to Hafeez, who took a low, diving catch in the gully. Strauss continued to play with confidence, pulling Asif twice for four, and the fast bowler had to wait until the 10th over of his opening spell to claim his first wicket.

Pakistan have missed Asif in a series where their bowling has lacked discipline and a cutting edge. This may be only his sixth Test but he has built up quite a reputation since taking 10 for 106 for Pakistan A against England in November 2005. In his previous four Tests Asif has bowled with skill and control, taking 24 wickets at an average of 16.5.

These faculties allowed him to take the crucial wickets of Strauss and Kevin Pietersen with consecutive deliveries. There was little Strauss could do about the ball that dismissed him. It left him off the pitch, tickled his outside edge and was well caught by Kamran Akmal behind the stumps.

Pietersen, with last summer's remarkable innings of 158 against Australia at this venue still fresh in the minds of a capacity crowd, walked out to a huge ovation but on this occasion he failed to deliver. It was a good ball that found his outside edge but one has to question the aggressive nature of the stroke he played. This, however, is the way Pietersen plays and spectators have to accept that there will be days when he disappoints.

Alastair Cook kept the hat-trick ball out, but Paul Collingwood soon became Asif's third victim. Before being trapped in front by a ball that nipped back, Collingwood brought up his 1,000th Test run when he edged Asif to third man for four. In an era when batsmen and bowlers are perpetually breaking records Collingwood's feat does not appear huge but in reaching the landmark he has shown that he can compete at this level.

Asif had now taken 3 for 4 in 11 balls and England's desire to leave for Australia with a confidence-boosting victory behind them was in real danger. Cook and Ian Bell put on 27 runs, but both fell before the tea interval.

Throughout the series Inzamam has been forced to bowl Danish Kaneria earlier than he would have wanted but yesterday his introduction was delayed until the 31st over and the leg-spinner struck with his fourth delivery when Bell edged a defensive stroke on to his pad and Faisal Iqbal took a simple catch at silly mid-off.

Cook walked across a Shahid Nazir yorker and was hit plumb in front to leave the hosts on 112 for 6 and without a recognised batsman at the crease. The wicketkeeper Read once again batted with enterprise, but England's tail had no answer to the deadly accurate Gul, who hit the stumps on three occasions.

Moment of the day

Inviting the opposition to bat at the Oval is a brave and potentially dangerous decision and Inzamam-ul-Haq, the Pakistan captain, surprised everyone when he chose this option yesterday. But it proved to be an inspired decision as Pakistan bowled England out for 173 to put themselves firmly in control.

Shot of the day

Batting was difficult during the morning session but Andrew Strauss, the England captain, still managed to play a couple of delightful strokes. The best of these was a drive off Umar Gul, the Pakistan opening bowler, that raced to the cover boundary for four. It was one of the few good shots yesterday.

Ball of the day

Mohammad Asif arrived in England with a big reputation and it was easy to see why. In helpful conditions, he provided

Pakistan with the cutting edge they have been lacking, finishing with 4 for 56. The ball that dismissed Kevin Pietersen was a gem, leaving the batsman off the pitch and finding the outside edge.

Weather and TV times

Weather Sunshine and heavy showers. Max temp: 21C

Television Live: Sky Sports 1, 10.30am Highlights: Five, 7.15pm

Oval scoreboard

First day of five; Pakistan won toss

England - First Innings

M E Trescothick c Mohammad Hafeez b Umar Gul 6 61 min, 43 balls

*A J Strauss c Kamran Akmal b Mohammad Asif 38 86 min, 57 balls, 7 fours

A N Cook lbw b Shahid Nazir 40 120 min, 69 balls, 6 fours

K P Pietersen c Kamran Akmal b Mohammad Asif 0 1 min, 1 ball

P D Collingwood lbw b Mohammad Asif 5 17 min, 7 balls, 1 four

I R Bell c Faisal Iqbal b Danish Kaneria 9 43 min, 28 balls, 1 four

ÝC M W Read b Umar Gul 33106 min, 62 balls, 3 fours

S I Mahmood b Umar Gul 15 44 min, 32 balls, 2 fours

M J Hoggard c Kamran Akmal b Mohammad Asif 3 12 min, 12 balls

S J Harmison not out 8 18 min, 15 balls, 2 fours

M S Panesar b Umar Gul 0 1 min, 1 ball

Extras (b4 lb5 nb7) 16

Total (259 min, 53.2 overs) 173

Fall: 1-36 (Trescothick) 2-54 (Strauss) 3-54 (Pietersen) 4-64 (Collingwood) 5-91 (Bell) 6-112 (Cook) 7-158 (Mahmood) 8-163 (Hoggard) 9-173 (Read) 10-173 (Panesar).

Bowling: Mohammad Asif 19-6-56-4 (13-5-39-3, 6-1-17-1); Umar Gul 15.2-3-46-4 (nb3) (10-2-30-1, 2-0-9-0, 3.2-1-7-3); Shahid Nazir 11-1-44-1 (nb3) (one spell); Danish Kaneria 8-1-18-1 (nb1) (6-1-7-1, 2-0-11-0).

Progress: First day: rain stopped play 11.01-11.33am at 0-0. RSP 12.08-1.29pm 27-0 (Trescothick 4, Strauss 22) 8 overs. Early lunch taken: 12.50pm. 50: 80 min, 17.3 overs. 100: 170 min, 35.2 overs. Tea: 134-6 (Read 26, Mahmood 1) 42 overs. 150: 215 min, 45.3 overs. Innings closed: 5.32pm.

Pakistan - First Innings

Mohammad Hafeez ret hurt 8 22 balls, 1 four

Imran Farhat not out 57 75 balls, 7 fours

Younis Khan c Read b Mahmood 9 13 balls

Mohammad Yousuf not out 12 25 balls, 1 four

Extras (lb1 w6 nb3) 10

Total (for 1, 22 overs) 96

Fall: 1-70 (Younis Khan).

To bat: *Inzamam-ul-Haq, Faisal Iqbal, ÝKamran Akmal, Shahid Nazir, Mohammad Asif, Umar Gul, Danish Kaneria.

Bowling: Hoggard 9-0-29-0; Harmison 6-1-38-0; Mahmood 6-1-24-1; Panesar 1-0-4-0.

Umpires: B R Doctrove (WI) and D B Hair (Aus).

TV replay umpire: P J Hartley.

Match referee: M J Procter.

Sport
premier leagueLive: All the latest news and scores from today's matches
News
newsMcKamey Manor says 'there is no escape until the tour is completed'
News
Queen Elizabeth II sends the first royal tweet under her own name to declare the opening of the new Information Age Galleries at the Science Museum, South Kensington, London
media... and the BBC was there to document one of the worst reactions
News
politics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi during Barcelona training in August
footballPete Jenson co-ghost wrote Suarez’s autobiography and reveals how desperate he's been to return
Money
Welcome to tinsel town: retailers such as Selfridges will be Santa's little helpers this Christmas, working hard to persuade shoppers to stock up on gifts
news
Arts and Entertainment
Soul singer Sam Smith cleared up at the Mobo awards this week
newsSam Smith’s Mobo triumph is just the latest example of a trend
News
Laurence Easeman and Russell Brand
people
Sport
Fans of Dulwich Hamlet FC at their ground Champion Hill
footballFans are rejecting the £2,000 season tickets, officious stewarding, and airline-stadium sponsorship
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker