KARACHI: A new-look England side took the opening Twenty20 international by six wickets in Karachi on Tuesday, caping their return to Pakistan after 17 years in a memorable way.
Opener Alex Hales hit a 40-ball 53 — his first international after a three-year absence on a failed recreational drug test — to anchor England´s chase of a modest 159-run target in 19.2 overs.
Pakistan opener Mohammad Rizwan scored 46-ball 68 to help Pakistan to 158-7 in their 20 overs after England sent them in to bat at a capacity National stadium.
The win gives England a 1-0 lead in the seven-match series.
Hales, recalled after injury ruled out Jonny Bairstow, smashed seven boundaries and added 55 for the fourth wicket with Harry Brook who finished with 42 not out.
Brook, one of seven England players to feature in this year´s Pakistan Super League, cracked seven boundaries in a robust 25-ball knock.
Ben Duckett (21), Dawid Malan (20) and Phil Salt (ten) were other England contributors.
Pakistan's innings was once again held by Rizwan.
The remaining matches are in Karachi on September 22, 23, 25, and in Lahore on September 28, 30 and October 2.
Opener Mohammad Rizwan continued his good batting form with an attractive 46-ball 68 to take Pakistan to 158-7 in the first Twenty20 cricket international against England in Karachi on Tuesday.
Rizwan, top run-getter in the Asia Cup earlier this month with 281, knocked six boundaries and two sixes and put on 85 for the first wicket with skipper Babar Azam (31) after England won the toss and fielded.
Iftikhar Ahmed hit three sixes in his 17-ball 28 but Pakistan managed just 71 runs in the last ten overs, losing six wickets.
Debutant Shan Masood failed with just seven runs while Haider Ali scored eleven.
England debutant paceman Luke Wood finished with 3-24, while spinner Adil Rashid took 2-27.
England won the toss and chose to field in the first T20I match against Pakistan at the National Stadium in Karachi.
After winning the toss, England's captain and skipper Moeen Ali chose to field first, while Pakistan will be batting with captain Babar Azam and wicket-keeper batter Mohammad Rizwan as openers.
England see the return of opener Alex Hales after a three-year absence following a failed recreational drug test in 2019.
Left-arm fast bowler Luke Wood makes his T20I debut for England while batter Shan Masood is playing his first T20I for Pakistan.
The guest team is visiting the country after a 17-year hiatus to play the seven-match series, four of which will be played in Karachi on September 20, 22, 23 and 25, respectively, while three in Lahore's Gaddafi Stadium on September 28, 30 and October 2.
Pakistan's players are wearing a special kit in today's game, which shows their names and numbers submerged in water, to show solidarity with victims of the devastating floods that hit the country this summer.
England's players are wearing black armbands as a tribute to Queen Elizabeth II, who passed away on September 8.
Pakistan: Babar Azam (captain), Mohammad Rizwan (wicket-keeper), Haider Ali, Shan Masood, Iftikhar Ahmed, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Nawaz, Usman Qadir, Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah, Shahnawaz Dahani.
England: Phil Salt (wicket-keeper), Alex Hales, Dawid Malan, Ben Duckett. Harry Brook, Moeen Ali (captain), Sam Curran, David Willey, Luke Wood, Adil Rashid, and Richard Gleeson.
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