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The unfortunate day when Pakistan bit the dust unpredictably was when a determined England beat them in Karachi’s National Stadium, the venue green shirts had been undefeated for a hefty 46-year period.

[caption id="attachment_114" align="alignright" width="300"]Graham Thorpe and Nasser Hussain returning to pavilion after historic victory. The dark in the background shows their determination (Photo: Getty Images) Graham Thorpe and Nasser Hussain returning to pavilion after historic victory. The dark in the background shows their determination (Photo: Getty Images)[/caption]

Before the defeat, Pakistan had played a total of 35 Tests, winning 17 and losing as much. The only match Pakistan lost was against England.

The 2000 series was also crucial as it was the England’s first tour to Pakistan since Shakoor Rana-Mike Gatting controversy. For then English captain Nasser Hussain the tour was a big chance to prove himself as he was being widely criticised for his poor performance.

England succeeded to draw the initial two Tests and then the decisive third Tests started in Karachi.

Pakistan scored 405 runs in the first inning, thanks to centuries by Inzamam-ul-Haq and Yousuf Youhana (now Mohammad Yousuf). Pakistan managed to take a meagre 17-run lead, finishing England’s innings on 388.

The two long innings stretched the game into the fourth day and the match was seemed to be heading to another draw with one and a half day left.

The hosts were 71 for 3 at the end of the fourth day. On the fifth day, a mix of England’s stunning bowling and Pakistan’s poor performance spoiled the green shirts show and their remaining seven wickets were fallen with an additional 80 runs on the scorecard.

With Pakistan scoring 158 runs in their second inning, England now needed 176 runs to win the game. But despite the low target, England had to put up a one-day like performance as they had only 35 minutes before the tea break and then the last session.

Though England had 44 overs to play, it was not easy for them face Saqlain Mushtaq on the fifth day.

However, what England did want was a win. But in their attempt to play aggressively, they lost their three batsmen on 65, and there are no prizes for guessing that all three were Saqlain’s victims.

With England still requiring 111 runs, Pakistan lulled themselves into a false sense of drawing the match. England’s eyes were on the target and Pakistan’s failure to read their opponents’ mind cost them the match.

Graham Thorpe and Graeme Hick together added a quick 91 runs to England’s scorecard, giving the match a new turn.

When Pakistani captain Moin Khan saw the match and the series wriggling out of the team’s hands, he started pursuing negative tactics. He slowed down the over-rate as low as nine overs an hour.

Now the match entered the most difficult stage for England as they were facing Waqar Younus and Saqlain while the sun was sinking below the horizon.

But, as the saying goes “where there’s a will there’s a way”, England wanted to lift the series at any cost. Ages after the sunset, when even wicketkeeper Moin had to grope around in the dark for the ball, Thorpe led England to victory in the 42nd over, taking two runs on Saqlain’s delivery.

England won the match by six wickets and also clinched the series 1-0. It was the first chance for any English side since 1961 to win a series in Pakistan, and for Nasser, it was no doubt one of the most cherishing moments of his career.

Michael Atherton was awarded player-of-the-match award for scoring 125.

The series marked Pakistan’s first defeat in the Karachi National Stadium in decades, and that too at the hands of England who had been on the wane lately.

The game proved that pursuing negative strategy never helps winning matches. The mistake of slowing over rate in the last moments led Pakistan to defeat. They might have drawn the match had they focussed on using their bowlers efficiently instead of looking for other means.

Because umpires had judged Pakistan’s intentions, they continued the match despite the dark and that helped England make a history.

Scorecard of the unforgettable match

Pakistan vs England, Third Test

December 7-11, 2000

Venue: National Stadium, Karachi, Pakistan

Result: England won by six wickets

Player of the match: Mike Atherton

پاکستان1st inningsRunsBalls4s6s
Saeed Anwarlbw b Gough81700
Imran Nazirc Giles b Trescothick204220
Saleem Elahib Caddick285440
Inzamam-ul-Haqc Trescothick b White142257220
Yousuf Youhanac & b Giles117242141
Abdur Razzaqc Hussain b Giles216530
Moin Khanc Hick b Giles131710
Shahid Afridib Giles101410
Saqlain Mushtaqb Gough168000
Waqar Younisb Gough175520
Danish Kanerianot out0200
Extras(b 3, lb 3, nb 7)13
Total(all out; 139.4 overs)405


England bowlingOversMaidensRunsWickets
D Gough27.45823
Andy Caddick231761
Marcus Trescothick141341
Craig White223641
Ian Salisbury183490
Ashley Giles357944


انگلستان1st inningsRunsBalls4s6s
Mike Athertonc Moin Khan b Abdul Razzaq12543090
Marcus Trescothickc Imran Nazir b Waqar Younis132720
Nasser Hussainc Inzamam-ul-Haq b Shahid Afridi5120941
Graham Thorpelbw b Waqar Younis183910
Alec Stewartc Yousuf Youhana b Saqlain Mushtaq297450
Graeme Hickc Shahid Afridi b Waqar Younis122920
Craig Whitest Moin Khan b Danish Kaneria359631
Ashley Gilesb Waqar Younis194420
Ian Salisburynot out208210
Andy Caddickc Moin Khan b Danish Kaneria31100
Darren Goughc Yousuf Youhana b Saqlain Mushtaq185810
Extras(b 12, lb 9, nb 24)45
Total(all out; 179.1 overs)388


Pakistan bowlingOversMaidensRunsWickets
Waqar Younis365884
Abdur Razzaq287641
Shahid Afridi163341
Saqlain Mushtaq52.1171012
Danish Kaneria4717802


پاکستان2nd inningsRunsBalls4s6s
Saeed Anwarc Thorpe b Caddick213330
Imran Nazirc †Stewart b Gough41610
Saleem Elahic Thorpe b Giles3713630
Inzamam-ul-Haqb Giles274540
Saqlain Mushtaqlbw b Gough41910
Yousuf Youhanac †Stewart b White246440
Abdur Razzaqc Atherton b Giles14100
Moin Khanc Hussain b White143310
Shahid Afridnot out152520
Waqar Younisrun out (†Stewart)0200
Danish Kanerialbw b Gough0900
Extras(b 3, lb 5, nb 3)11
Total(all out; 70 overs)158


England bowlingOversMaidensRunsWickets
Darren Gough134303
Andy Caddick152401
Ashley Giles2712383
Ian Salisbury30120
Craig White124302


انگلستان2nd innings (target: 176 runs)RunsBalls4s6s
Mike Athertonc Saeed Anwar b Saqlain Mushtaq263350
Marcus Trescothickc Inzamam-ul-Haq b Saqlain Mushtaq242931
Alec Stewartc †Moin Khan b Saqlain Mushtaq51600
Graham thorpenot out649840
Graeme Hickb Waqar Younis406420
Nasser Hussainnot out6800
Extras(b 8, lb 2, w 1)11
Total(4 wickets; 41.3 overs)176


Pakistan bowlingOversMaidensRunsWickets
Waqar Younis60271
Abdur Razzaq40170
Saqlain Mushtaq17.31643
Danish Kaneria30180
Shahid Afridi111400
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