This Day, That Year: England Script History With Test-Series Win in Pakistan After 39 years
Michael Atherton (© AFP)

On this day 20 years ago, England beat Pakistan at the National Stadium in Karachi to register their first-ever Test series on their soil after 39 years. It was Day 5 of the third Test, which was the last match of the series and a ‘Chinese cut’ from Graham Thorpe’s bat off Saqlain Mushtaq pocket England a historic win to remember.

Before the last match of the tour in Karachi, the first two-Tests in Lahore and Faisalabad resulted into the draw. Both the teams were determined to seal the series in Karachi as Pakistan skipper Moin Khan won the toss and opted to bat first. The hosts top-order had a flop show in the first innings as they lost three wickets for just 64 runs on the scoreboard. But Pakistan had two prolific batsmen in the middle-order with Inzamam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Yousuf. The duo took apart the English bowling line-up and shared a massive 259-run stand. Inzamam slammed 147 runs, which was laced by 22 fours. While Yousuf scored 117 with 14 fours and a six during his knock. Pakistan managed to post 405 runs on the scoreboard.

For England, opener Michael Atherton slammed 125 runs to give them a fighting chance in the game. Apart from Atherton, captain Naser Hussain also slammed 51 as England posted 388 on the scoreboard. The hosts managed to get a 17-run lead.

In the second innings, Pakistan batsmen had an underwhelming show as England bowlers brought their A-game on the table and restrict them for just 158 runs. Darren Gough and Ashley Giles shared three wickets each, while Craigh White picked two. Andy Caddick also took a crucial wicket of Saeed Anwar.

England were back in the game after restricting Pakistan for a par score as the target for them was 176 runs. Legendary Saqlain Mushtaq spun his web and dismissed the visitors top three batsmen with 65 runs on the scoreboard. But Graham Thorpe and Graeme Hick were determined to take the England team to a historic win. However, Hick was dismissed on 40 by Waqar Younis but his 91-run stand with Thorpe set the tone for the game.

In the end, Thorpe didn’t waste much time with the weather playing some mind games, as he sealed the win for visitors with an unbeaten 64-run innings, captain Hussain also remained not out on 6.

Opener Atherton was chosen as the Man of the Match for his century in England’s first innings.