x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Stuart Broad planning for England to face down Umar Gul's bowling

England prepare for Pakistan's bowlers after they lost the first Twenty20 in Dubai by eight runs.

Pakistan's Umar Gul, second left, was man-of-the-match in the first Twenty20.
Pakistan's Umar Gul, second left, was man-of-the-match in the first Twenty20.

DUBAI // Stuart Broad, the England captain, says his side must find a way to combat the threat of Umar Gul's death bowling if they are to square the Twenty20 series against Pakistan tonight.

Broad will pursue a second win of his budding reign as England captain, safe in the knowledge that they would likely be a game up in the three-match series were it not for the late-innings parsimony of the Pakistan fast bowler on Thursday night.

Pakistan clinched the opening game by eight runs, as England's inexperienced batsmen faltered with the winning line in sight.

"We need to make sure we come back [tonight] right in the zone," said Broad, who will be leading England for the fourth time.

"There was certainly a lot right with our performance [on Thursday].

"It is important our guys get their plans right against their experienced bowlers at the end and, hopefully, we can come out on the right side."

England may be the defending world champions in the format, but Pakistan have won more Twenty20 internationals than any other side. Given the savvy their bowlers showed on Thursday here, it is easy to see why, and Misbah-ul-Haq, the captain, is happy to have such a potent arsenal at his disposal.

"When you have Umar Gul, Shahid Afridi and Saeed Ajmal, three of the top bowlers in T20 cricket, you always have a chance," Misbah said.

"When a bowler is at his best it is difficult to play him. Gul bowled really well [in the opening match] and there was no answer to him."

pradley@thenational.ae