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banner Sunday, 3 June, 2001, 18:10 GMT 19:10 UK
England still have much to do
Trescothick sweeps the dangerous Saqlain
Trescothick sweeps the dangerous Saqlain
BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew reviews the fourth day of the second Test at Old Trafford.

The optimists feel that England have a chance to win the match: this always happens when the team batting last have a target to overhaul.

However, the facts speak for themselves. In more than 100 years of Test cricket, England have scored more than 300 to win a match in their fourth innings only twice.

The highest score they have achieved in those circumstances on this ground, unbelievably, is 145 for seven! In that light, 370 seems a very long off, indeed!

However, what a start England have had. Mike Atherton and Marcus Trescothick did more than simply survive the nasty 22 overs session before the close.

Atherton enjoys an exchange with Waqar
Atherton enjoys an exchange with Waqar
They laid the foundation from which England might, conceivably, win the game.

The final delivery of Saqlain Mushtaq's second over gave England a glimpse of the difficulties they will face if early wickets are lost in the final morning.

From around the wicket, the master off-spinner aimed a flat delivery at Trescothick's leg stump only for the ball to spin viciously and fizz just a millimetre past the left hander's outside edge.

It was a wonderful ball - too good, in fact - and if the pressure is suddenly on, England will need a measure of luck if they are to survive in these conditions.

Saqlain came into the attack after a ferocious new ball burst from Wasim Akram, who seems determined to make an impact in what might very well be his final Test match.

He was applauded all the way to the wicket when he came out to bat and, again, 41 balls later after he had smashed 36 entertaining runs.

Now was his chance with the ball - and with his old mate, Mike Atherton on strike, too.

Wasim was cheered on and off the Old Trafford field
Wasim was cheered on and off the Old Trafford field
The result was a succession of furious bouncers, some of which Atherton hooked, some of which were simply too fast and were hurriedly avoided.

Even Trescothick, who is a fine player of pace bowling, was softened up sufficiently to aim a firm footed drive outside his off stump.

But the opening pair hung on, and the fact that they made it through that torrid session gives England great hope of saving the game.

Overall, it was just Pakistan's day again.

It might have been very different had Nick Knight, whose return to Test cricket has been something of a nightmare, not dropped Inzamam at slip off Caddick in only the sixth over of the day.

Inzy had only 36 at the time and when he was finally caught at mid-wicket for 85, he had stretched Pakistan's lead to 250.

He and Yousuf Youhana had added 141 together and it was a great shame for Yousuf that, having found some form for the first time this season and reached 49, he should be given out caught at slip when the ball glanced his helmet, rather than a glove.

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