Chris Woakes and Jos Buttler's counter-attacking partnership steered England to a 3-wicket win over Pakistan in Manchester.
Woakes was felicitated with the 'Player of the Match' award.
The fourth day of the opening Test match between hosts England and Pakistan at the Old Trafford in Manchester turned up with an absolute blockbuster finish.
The hosts were down and out after losing their top five batsmen, adding only 117 on the board, and a steep chase of 277 runs in front.
However, it was the diabolical partnership (139) between Chris Woakes (84*) and Jos Buttler (75) which saved the blushes for the ‘Three Lions’.
England captain, Joe Root, during the post-match presentation party, appeared elated with the character and self-belief displayed by his men.
“The partnership between Woakesy and Buttler was brilliant. We knew it was going to take something special but after last summer, it’s really hard to stop believing. That’s one strong trait of ours, that we have a lot of self-belief, so I’m really proud of them,” Root commented.
A lot of questions were raised over the inclusion of Buttler in the side, despite repeated failures.
Moreover, in the fourth innings of the Test match against Pakistan, the swashbuckler went on to show why he’s indispensable for his team.
“For Jos to play as well as he did, it showed his character. It made sure that the second new ball wouldn’t be a factor since he attacked the spinners,” the England skipper added.
With the win over Pakistan, Root and Co. put the monkey off the back of losing the opening match of the Test series. Earlier, England lost the opening Test match against West Indies at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton, last month.
“It has been frustrating to lose the first Test of the series all the time, so I couldn’t be prouder of the character of the team,” Root concluded.
Also, during the presentation ceremony, Woakes was presented with the ‘Player of the Match’ award for his stellar all-round performance. Woakes spilled beans on plans to counter-attack along with Buttler.
“I think that was the way to go on that wicket, just counter-attack. Especially the ball that Ollie got. We thought of taking initiative by scoring quickly and thought that was the way to go on that surface. The idea of taking it to them was the perfect thing to do. To see Jos do his thing was incredible. Unfortunately, he got out,” Woakes reckoned.