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Rashid shine as England clinch T20 series against Pakistan

Adil Rashid took a career-best haul before England just did enough in a nervous chase to seal a thrilling and series-clinching three-wicket win over Pakistan in a Twenty20 decider at Old Trafford on Tuesday.

Victory gave England the three-match contest 2-1 in their last white-ball fixture of the 2021 home season.

Leg-spinner Rashid took 4-35 as Pakistan were restricted to 154-6 after winning the toss, with Mohammad Rizwan batting through the innings for 76 not out.

Eoin Morgan played a crucial hand, hitting 21 off 12 balls, helping England to sign off their white-ball summer with a fourth series win out of four, and 10 victories from a possible 12 games (one defeat and one no result) – and while it was close they always felt just ahead at the end.

This was a final audition for England’s World Cup hopefuls on a pitch totally unsuited to their freewheeling ways. Rashid is a certain starter of course but Moeen Ali played a big part and in the last two games has reimposed himself on this side, taking one for 19 off four accurate overs.

The skipper Babar Azam, speaking during a post-match press conference, said his side had set a 15-20 run short target for England in the final and decisive T20I match.

There are ups and downs in cricket, but I hope that the team can produce good results in the upcoming matches, Babar said, as Pakistan’s tour of the West Indies will start later this month.

The skipper said the team faces a setback when wickets fall continuously, adding that the batsman had played some amateur shots during the third T20I.

Babar lauded the spinners for bowling well and noted that Pakistan’s fielding was getting better with time. “We still need to work on building [match-winning] partnerships.

“Mohammad Rizwan’s performance was up to the mark during this tour,” Babar added.

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