England Cricket Corporate Hospitality - Royal London ODI - Headingley

Pakistan take final Test to level series against England

Pakistan’s defeat of England at the Oval to draw the series two apiece was a reality check for Alastair Cook’s side.

England went into the final home Test of the summer with the chance to return to number one in the Test rankings. But it wasn’t to be and probably not deserved.

And, as a very frank Cook admits the side are still a “work in progress”. The batting of Alex Hales, James Vince and Gary Ballance has been far from convincing.

They managed a combined 498 at an average of 22.63 – not good enough at Test level, or indeed any level. Jonny Bairstow is averaging 76 in Tests and Moeen Ali did well with the bat.

But the team is hugely dependant on Cook and Joe Root getting runs. They didn’t disappoint with 935 runs between them at an average of 66.78. But they cannot be expected to shoulder the burden all the time.

England just can’t seem to find a consistent opening partner for Cook. It means players will prepare for the one day internationals against Pakistan with much to prove.

An opportunity for new faces to put themselves forward for Test consideration.

Of the bowlers, Moeen still fails to convince as the main spinner, Chris Woakes was England’s man of the series but great fast bowlers Stuart Broad and Jimmy Anderson are just beginning to find life tougher.

Cook took it on the chin. “For a batter, our currency is runs – and as a top order, we haven’t consistently been doing it,” he admitted. “We played at a disappointing level as a side and we weren’t good enough in all three areas of the game.”

But it is hardly a crisis. “We’re still the same side who beat Australia and won away in South Africa, so it’s not all doom and gloom,” Cook added.

Dropped catches, including by Cook himself, cost England dear. On the positive side, Ben Stokes will soon be back from injury, and there are voices who believe Jos Buttler deserves a re-call.

England to face Pakistan in Royal London ODI Series

Pakistan now have two one-day internationals against Ireland followed by five ODIs and a Twenty20 against England, a mouth-watering series in store.

Eventmasters are delighted to announce that we still have limited corporate hospitality packages available for England v Pakistan – Headingley (Thursday 1st September 2016).

For more information please see our Headingley England v Pakistan corporate hospitality packages page.