Taylor and Bell gear up with fifties against Pakistan A

Sport360 staff 20:14 09/10/2015
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James Taylor bats during day two of the tour match against Pakistan in Sharjah.

James Taylor and Ian Bell hit half-centuries in the drawn two-day game against Pakistan 'A' on Friday, to gear up for the more challenging three-Test series starting next week.

Taylor hit 61 and Bell scored 53 as England made an unimpressive 198-9 on the second and final day at Sharjah cricket ground.

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Pakistan 'A' had made 192-9 declared in their knock.

But apart from Taylor and Bell only Jos Buttler made any significant contribution with 39, while openers Alex Hales (nine) and Moeen Ali also failed with seven.

That leaves England's problems over top order batting unresolved as they want either Ali or Hales to partner skipper Alastair Cook in the first of three Tests against Pakistan starting in Abu Dhabi on October 13.

Since the match was a non-first class encounter, Ali was allowed two innings but he only managed 11 in the second outing. His bowling being a plus point may earn him a place in the first Test.

Jonny Bairstow, who made a half-century in the first warm-up match, fell for nought while all-rounder Ben Stoke also failed to score, his second failure on the tour.

Bell and Taylor added 102 for the third wicket before the later retired to give others some batting practice. Bell hit four boundaries and a six during his sedate 100-ball stint.

Taylor knocked six boundaries during his 123-ball stay.

For Pakistan 'A' left-arm paceman Mir Hamza finished with 4-34 while Junaid Khan and Zafar Gohar took two wickets apiece.

The two teams will also play four one-day and three Twenty20 internationals after the Tests.

Abbreviated Scores: Pakistan 'A' 192-9 dec (Adnan Akmal 74 not out; S. Finn 4-16, Adil Rashid 3-53)
England 198-9 (J. Taylor 61, I. Bell 53 retired not out; Mir Hamza 4-34)

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