England’s spinners proved too much for Pakistan to handle in the second Twenty20 with a 45-run win for the hosts leveling the three-match series at 1-1, but a massive six by Liam Livingstone was what had everyone in awe.
Fresh off his ODI debut for England, the Perth Scorchers Englishman was in fine form with the bat scoring 38 runs from 23 balls.
England was 5-154 when Livingstone was at the crease against Pakistan bowler Haris Rauf and delivered a six so sweet it flew well over the grandstand at Leeds.
“Where has that ended up?” Sky Sports commentator Ian Ward said.
“That’s massive! I don’t think I’ve ever seen a six bigger than that.”
The monster hit was estimated to have travelled at least 120 metres and flown over onto the Leeds Rhinos’ training pitch.
“Good job for @liaml4893 that back garden cricket rules are not in play, as everyone knows if you hit it over the neighbours fence it’s six and OUT! We’ll leave the side gate open, he can pop round and get it,” the Rhinos tweeted.
The rugby league club weren’t the only ones that noticed the epic boundary with vision of the moment quickly going viral.
“It was huge, but I’ve seen him do that a couple of times now,” Livingstone’s England teammate Moeen Ali said after the match.
“I played with him in (South Africa’s) Mzansi Super League and he hit one out of Johannesburg.”
Having broken with tradition by including Adil Rashid (2-30) and Matt Parkinson (1-25) as twin leg-spinners at Headingley, England saw the pair seize control of the match with a defining spell that slammed the breaks on Pakistan’s chase.
Between them the duo allowed just 55 runs and took three wickets from eight controlled overs, backed up by Ali’s off-breaks which accounted for another two batters.
The tourists were eventually stranded on 155-9, well short of England’s 200 all out in 19.5 overs, after Pakistan won the toss and chose to field.
Jos Buttler played a defining hand in England’s innings, top-scoring with 59 after returning as captain in place of the rested Eoin Morgan. His 39-ball innings included seven fours and two sixes.
The first T20 international in Leeds had started with an action-packed first over, Jason Roy smashing Imad Wasim for six and four before spiraling a catch to short third man.
Mohammad Hasnain took key wickets for Pakistan — including the dismissal of Buttler, who drilled straight to mid-off, and that of Mooen (36 off 16) — but he was expensive and finished with figures of 3-51 off four overs. The runs conceded included Buttler scooping Hasnain over his shoulder for an outrageous six.
The chase started steadily, Babar Azam (22 off 16) and Mohammad Rizwan (37 off 29) chipping off 50 with controlled flashes of aggression. Babar, as always, was the prize wicket and it was Saqib Mahmood who claimed it. Dragging back his length and taking pace off after being hit over the top, he saw an attempted drive plug to mid-off.
Shadab Khan hit an undefeated 22-ball 36.
The third T20 is on Tuesday at Manchester.
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