Anderson edges closer to magical mark as Pakistan dig in

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SOUTHAMPTON: England seamer James Anderson moved one shy of 600 Test wickets as he struck late on a frustrating and mainly forgettable fourth day of the third and final Test against Pakistan on Monday.

The 38-year-old, looking to become the first pace bowler to reach that landmark, had opener Abid Ali lbw for a painstaking 42 late on a weather-shortened day at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton.

Even though the floodlights were on, the umpires ruled the only way play could continue safely was with spin from both ends. As a result Anderson, who had miserly figures of 1-18 from 12 overs, was replaced by England captain Joe Root, who bowled his part-time off-breaks in partnership with Dom Bess.

But with the natural light fading, the umpires decided conditions were unsafe even under slow bowling.

Pakistan, who followed on after being bowled out for 273 in reply to England’s first innings 583-8 declared, ended the day on 100-2, still requiring 210 runs to make England bat again, although Tuesday’s weather forecast is for heavy rain.

Pakistan began the day having not started their second innings and crept along to 41-0 before rain forced the players off for an early lunch.

Scoreboard

ENGLAND (1st Innings) 583-8 declared (Z. Crawley 267, J.C. Buttler 152, C.R. Woakes 40; Fawad Alam 2-46).

PAKISTAN (1st Innings) 273 (Azhar Ali 141 not out, Mohammad Rizwan 53; J.M. Anderson 5-56).

PAKISTAN (2nd Innings):

Shan Masood lbw b Broad 18

Abid Ali lbw b Anderson 42

Azhar Ali not out 29

Babar Azam not out 4

EXTRAS (LB-7) 7

TOTAL (for two wkts, 56 overs) 100

FALL OF WKTS: 1-49, 2-88.

BOWLING (to-date): Anderson 12-3-18-1; Broad 11-5-23-1; Woakes 8-2-14-0; Archer 9-5-8-0; Bess 14-3-27-0; Root 2-0-3-0.

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