Moeen Ali’s late rally was in vain as Pakistan produced a spirited bowling display to beat England by six runs in the fifth Twenty20 in Lahore yesterday and take a 3-2 lead in the seven-match series.
Chasing a modest 146, England needed 15 off the final over but debutant Aamer Jamal (1-13) held his nerve against the experienced Moeen (51 not out) to close out the game for Pakistan.
England never got going in their chase, losing both openers early before Dawid Malan chipped in with a dogged 36 and Moeen kept them in the hunt with a few late blows but the England captain left himself too much to do in the last over.
Haris Rauf (2-41) shone with the ball and five other Pakistan bowlers picked up a wicket each.
Pakistan skipper Babar was pleased with his team’s performance.
“To win T20Is you have to take wickets regularly and our bowlers are doing that especially in the middle overs. Shadab came back today and got us a breakthrough. Nawaz bowled 2 crucial overs in the powerplay. I’ve got a lot of confidence in my bowlers,” Babar said after the match.
“Aamer Jamal was full of confidence and he had full belief that he could defend the runs. He was outstanding. We won the match due to his self-belief,” he added in praise of the debutant.
After being asked to bat, England fast bowler Mark Wood’s express pace helped the tourists bowl out Pakistan for a below-par 145.
Wood - playing only his second international since undergoing elbow surgery - took 3-20 after the home team were sent in to bat at Gaddafi Stadium.
Wood’s fellow pacers Sam Curran (2-23) and David Willey (2-23) also bowled with hostility as pakistan were dismissed in 19 overs.
Amid a middle-order collapse from 42-1 which saw Pakistan lose six wickets off 48 balls for just 58 runs - opener Mohamed Rizwan held on with a defiant 46-ball 63.
Wood first dismissed Pakistan skipper Babar in the third over for just nine runs before left-arm pacer David Willey removed Shan Masood and Iftikhar Ahmed to derail Pakistan.
Mohamed Nawaz, for a duck, and Shadab Khan fell to injudicious run outs to leave Pakistan tottering at 100-7.
Rizwan completed his 20th T20I half- century before hitting Curran straight into the hands of Adil Rashid at deep square-leg in the 18th over.
Rizwan struck three sixes and two fours.
The seven-match series is tied at 2-2 after the first four matches were played in Karachi.
Pakistan 145 all out in 19 overs (Mohamed Rizwan 63; M. Wood 3-20, D. Willey 2-23, S. Curran 2-23) beat England 139-7 in 20 overs (Moeen Ali 51 not out; Haris Rauf 2-41) by six runs
Series: Pakistan 3-2 England
Pakistan’s players celebrate after the dismissal of England’s Ben Duckett (not pictured) during the fifth Twenty20 international against England at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore yesterday. (AFP)