When Liam Livingstone is batting, you just sit and watch, admire and if you are a bowler, wonder what has gone wrong in your life to deserve such a punishment. Haris Rauf had such a day when Livingstone deposited the ball outside the stadium into the nearby rugby ground in an orbital strike.
At 85/2, England were in a commanding position at Headingley in Leeds, with the Pakistan bowlers struggling to keep the home batsmen under check. However, the tamest of dismissal saw Moeen Ali depart, putting his head down, after a 16-ball 36 that gave the Three Lions impetus heading into the middle-overs of the first innings. While the Pakistan bowlers, including Mohammad Hasnain, had finally seen a smile on their faces.
However, as soon as Liam Livingstone walked in, they understood the gravity of the situation, especially after his destruction in the first T20I, where the only sight was of the ball exiting the stadium. While he had a quiet start to his night, with 2 runs from three balls, the moment Haris Rauf entered, Livingstone started finding the middle of the bat. In the tenth over of the innings, he smashed the bowler for a massive six but that was just the start of it all.
In the next two overs, Livingstone scored a boundary before he took on Imad Wasim’s delivery for a massive six. Two massive sixes already in the innings, the beast in the right-hander was not satisfied, who continued his onslaught even when the wickets were falling in the equal interval at the other end.
But the best was yet to come, it came in the 16th over of the innings, it was a familiar figure - Rauf in his run-up, there was Livingstone at the striker’s end. The ball came at a pace but when it exited the stadium (literally), it was probably the fastest delivery to exit the stadium with Livingstone’s long-leaver getting the ball off the middle of the bat.
After scoring one of the biggest sixes, the English international just casually shrugged his shoulders while Rauf looked stunned. The ball did not just exit the stadium, it went to the nearby rugby ground, leaving the fans and the commentators in awe. Livingstone might have announced his presence with a century but today, he ensured that his presence will remain in the fans’ hearts.
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