Centurion Misbah-ul-Haq believes Pakistan need another 100 runs to seize control of the first Investec Test at Lord’s after he led his side’s recovery against England with a majestic ton on a placid wicket.
Misbah, aged 42, became the oldest player to claim a Test hundred since 1934 as he finished unbeaten on 110 after sharing a stand of 148 for Pakistan’s fifth wicket with Asad Shafiq. The tourists closed an attritional opening day on 282-6.
Having reduced Pakistan to 134-4, England required a late counter-attack to drag themselves back into contention, All-rounder Chris Woakes dismissed Shafiq for 73 and then nightwatchman Rahat Ali with the day’s final delivery as he claimed 4-45.
Skipper Misbah, who celebrated his century by completing 10 press-ups, said: “We’re in a good position at the moment. We really want to score another 100 runs to give us a good chance.”
England debutant Jake Ball, meanwhile, who claimed his maiden Test scalp by trapping Azhar Ali LBW, insists the game remains in the balance and the hosts are looking to restrict Pakistan to 350.
“Those last two wickets were massive. They picked us up and gave us a bit of a buzz,” said seamer Ball. “If we come tomorrow and get a couple more early on we’re right in the game. If we can get them out for 350, we have batsmen who can score runs at a decent rate.”
But the day belonged Misbah, who has done much to rebuild the Pakistan side since the fallout of the 2010 match-fixing scandal at Lord’s.