England thrash Pakistan ahead of T20 World Cup

England have remained in good form ahead of the T20 World Cup with an emphatic six-wicket victory over Pakistan in their final warmup fixture.
After their concluding match against Australia was affected by rain on Friday, there was extra significance on the encounter in Brisbane versus opponents who they recently beat 4-3 in a best-of-seven series.

With arguably each of their 15-man squad having reasons to be selected for the opening game with Afghanistan on Saturday, there was pressure to impress in a game which was reduced by one over due to rain.

England initially lost the toss and witnessed Pakistan put on 49 for the opening wicket, but there would soon be dismissals at regular intervals.

Liam Livingstone got the key wicket, dismissing Shan Masood who top-scored for 39, although five different England bowlers picked up a wicket.

David Willey’s double came in successive balls, posting figures of 2-22, and Pakistan would go on to make 160-8 from their 19 overs.

In response, England openers Phil Salt and Alex Hales recorded just one and nine runs respectively, but their brief stints at the crease allowed Ben Stokes and Liam Livingstone to gain valuable time in the middle.

Stokes, who came in at three, hit three maximums during a knock of 36 runs from 18 deliveries, while Livingstone chipped in with 28 from 16.

However, it was a swashbuckling unbeaten 59-run stand from Harry Brook and Sam Curran which got England over the line with 26 balls to spare.

Brook made 45 from just 24 balls and Curran was sensational in producing 33 runs from just 14 deliveries, the pair contributing seven sixes between them.

England will now spend the remainder of the week preparing for their meeting with Afghanistan on Saturday, before they also face Australia, New Zealand and two qualifiers in Group 1 of the Super 12.

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