England v Pakistan: Chris Woakes says hosts will draw on past experiences

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England v Pakistan Highlights: Ben Stokes inspires home fightback

Pace bowler Chris Woakes says England will draw on their recent experiences of claiming unlikely victories in the first Test against Pakistan.

After three days Pakistan have a lead of 244 – only once has more runs been chased to win at Emirates Old Trafford.

Last summer England won the World Cup final and Headingley Ashes Test from seemingly impossible positions.

“You will here a lot about records and run-chases, but they are there to be broken,” said Woakes.

“You look at those wins – those are the sort where we were written off.

“We’ve definitely got the ability. It’s obviously going to be difficult, but we have got the players that can do it.”

Even late into day three, England looked set to fall victim to the mistakes they made earlier in the match, when they twice reprieved Pakistan opener Shan Masood on his way to 156, committed tactical errors and slumped to 12-3 in their first innings.

England recovered to post 219, but with Pakistan steadily adding to their lead on Friday evening, the tourists were close to moving out of sight.

The hosts, though, claimed four wickets for 27 runs as Pakistan closed on 137-8 to leave the match finely poised.

Pakistan remain strong favourites, not least because of a surface that is offering significant assistance to their leg-spinners, who have already shared six wickets.

‘That is plumb’ – Woakes traps Azhar lbw as Pakistan lose another wicket

“You have to believe,” said Woakes, who dismissed Babar Azam and Azhar Ali, Pakistan’s two best players.

“We’ll certainly give it a good go. It will be a huge win if we are able to do it.”

England’s late flurry included two wickets for Ben Stokes, who was previously thought to be unfit to bowl because of a quad injury.

Among a number of talismanic performances, it was Stokes who inspired England to victory in the World Cup final and at Headingley.

“I’m not overly surprised he did what he does. We know he’s capable of miracles,” said Woakes.

“I had no idea he was able to bowl. It was nice to see him back performing. He’s got a knack of picking up wickets.

“When you are in a dogfight, he is the sort of player you want on your team.”



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