Pakistan win toss, elect to bat in first test at Lord's

LONDON: Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq won the toss and elected to bat in the first test of the four-match series against England at Lord's on Thursday.

The visitors picked three left-arm pacemen -- Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz and Rahat Ali -- in their lineup with Yasir Shah as the lone specialist spinner.

Amir's return to test cricket following a conviction for spot-fixing has dominated the build-up to the series, as has right-hander Joe Root moving up the order to number three for England.

"Looks a good pitch and the sun is up, so we'll bat first," Misbah said.

England captain Alastair Cook too would have preferred to bat first.

"Always a tempter with a nice bit of green grass but we would have batted, looks a really good wicket," he said.

Nottinghamshire paceman Jake Ball makes his test debut in place of the injured James Anderson.

"We've seen Jake for a few months now and he looks a really good bowler. Pakistan are a really good side and it'll be a really good battle," Cook said.


England: England: Alastair Cook (captain), Alex Hales, Joe Root, James Vince, Gary Ballance, Jonny Bairstow (wicketkeeper), Moeen Ali, Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes, Steven Finn, Jake Ball.

Pakistan: Mohammad Hafeez, Shan Masood, Azhar Ali, Younis Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq (captain), Asad Shafiq, Sarfraz Ahmed (wicketkeeper), Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Amir, Yasir Shah, Rahat Ali.