Ben Stokes insists that Adil Rashid will bounce back from the nightmare start to his Test career after the England leg-spinner returned the worst-ever figures by a bowler on debut.
With figures of 0 for 163 in 34 overs against Pakistan in the first Test here, the Yorkshireman overtook the unwanted record of the Australian leg-spinner Bryce McGain, who conceded 149 runs from 18 wicketless overs in his one and only Test against South Africa in Cape Town six years ago.
England are facing an uphill struggle to save the opening Test after Pakistan racked up an imposing 523 for 8 declared on the second day here.
However, the England openers Alastair Cook and Moeen Ali at least made a positive start to the reply, seeing off the final 21 overs of the day as England closed on 56 without loss.
Stokes, the pick of England’s attack with figures of 4 for 57, said of Rashid: “It hasn’t gone the way he would have wanted it to, but he was on his debut and they looked to target him. We know how well he’s been bowling in practice. Next time he has the ball in hand, hopefully, he can deliver something big.
“Adil has done very well in one-day cricket recently so we all know he can perform on the big stage. He’s thoroughly deserved his call-up and if he gets another chance he can easily change the game. I think he’ll be able to put this behind him,” Stokes predicted.
Steven Finn, meanwhile, has been ruled out of the rest of the tour with a bone stress injury to his left foot.
The Middlesex fast bowler made a spectacular return to Test cricket last summer after two years away when he took eight wickets in the third Ashes Test at Edgbaston.
England will be hoping that Finn, who has been replaced in the Test and one-day squads by Sussex’s Chris Jordan, will be fit for their tour of South Africa that starts in December.
Stokes added: “To see Finny go home after bowling so well is pretty heartbreaking.”
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