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Page last updated at 11:43 GMT, Sunday, 29 August 2010 12:43 UK

England beat Pakistan in tarnished Test to win series

Fourth Test, Lord's:
England 446 bt Pakistan 74 and 147 by an innings and 225 runs

Match scorecard

Amir failed to trouble the scorers as Swann ripped through his defences
Amir failed to trouble the scorers as Swann ripped through his defences

By James Standley

England beat Pakistan by an innings and 225 runs in the fourth and final Test to take the series 3-1 on a day overshadowed by corruption allegations.

Graeme Swann ended with 5-62 as England condemned Pakistan to their heaviest ever defeat.

Umar Akmal's attacking 79 not out was the only resistance from the tourists.

But allegations of spot-fixing - deliberately bowling no-balls to set up betting coups - against some Pakistan players took the gloss off the win.

Before the spot-fixing claims, which are being investigated by police, surfaced on Saturday night it had been an exhilarating Test at Lord's.

Superb bowling from 18-year-old Mohammad Amir, who would later be accused of bowling two deliberate no-balls, reduced England to 47-5 and then 102-7 before Jonathan Trott and Stuart Broad produced a Test record eighth-wicket stand of 332 to put England in the driving seat.

The rollercoaster ride continued on day three as 14 Pakistan wickets tumbled before the allegations surfaced, but despite England racing to victory on Sunday it is the allegations that are likely to be the biggest memory of the match in the future.

The Pakistan players did not arrive at the ground until an hour before the scheduled start, and they locked themselves in their dressing room without practising ahead of the resumption at 1100 BST.

The grey cloud hanging over the ground mirrored the mood at Lord's as the tourists picked up their woeful second innings on 41-4 and there was swing for Anderson from the off.

There was also immediate spin for Swann, but it was an arm ball that did for Azhar Ali, the ball zipping past a groping outside edge to strike the top of off stump.

Graeme Swann
The allegations took the shine off Swann's five-wicket haul

After his habit of striking in his first over of a spell Swann was only slightly slower this time, the wicket coming off the fourth ball of his second over.

James Anderson struck with the first ball of the next over, the ball bouncing more than expected to take the edge of a prod from Kamran Akmal - one of the four players interviewed by police in connection with allegations made in the News of the World - and it already looked as though it would all be over by lunch.

Amir, captain Salman Butt and pace bowler Mohammad Asif were the other players who gave statements to police over the spot-fixing allegations.

Amir's sublime bowling at the start of the second day, during which he became the youngest player in history to take 50 Test wickets, seemed a lifetime ago as he was undone by a superb delivery from Swann.

Bowling from round the wicket the off-spinner pitched the ball on middle and spun it back to hit the top of off stump and send the teenager on his way without troubling the scorers.

Wahab Riaz perished trying to hit over the top and managing only to ladle the ball to Kevin Pietersen at wide mid-on for another duck.

When the 6ft 5in Broad unfurled his limbs to swoop and run out Saeed Ajmal the end appeared nigh, but Umar and Asif were determined to go down fighting.

The pair put on 50 for the last wicket - Pakistan's biggest partnership of the match by a considerable distance - before Asif hammered the ball onto his foot attempting to hit through mid-wicket and was caught by Collingwood at slip for a solitary run.

Akmal hit two sixes and 11 fours in his entertaining 79 not out but it was very much a lone effort as Pakistan - whose last series in England in 2006 ended in controversy as they refused to re-take the field after being accused of ball tampering - slumped to their heaviest Test defeat.

In normal circumstances England would have been overjoyed to have ruthlessly finished off a remarkable Test and entertaining series before lunch.

But the downbeat mood at the end of the game reflected the knowledge that events at Lord's will instead be remembered more for allegations of corruption - something the sport desperately hoped it had left behind.



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see also
Cricket's fight against fixing
29 Aug 10 |  Cricket
Pakistan trio keen to see row end
04 Sep 10 |  England
England v Pakistan photos
29 Aug 10 |  England
Ruthless England close on victory
28 Aug 10 |  England
Trott & Broad tons rescue England
27 Aug 10 |  England
Strauss fails at rain-hit Lord's
26 Aug 10 |  England
Pakistan in England 2010
07 Sep 10 |  Cricket


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