Pakistan seal series whitewash as England face loss of No. 1 ranking

Bowler Umar Gul (center) took four wickets as Pakistan won the third and final Test against England.

Story highlights

  • Pakistan whitewash England in a series for the first time with Dubai victory
  • England lose by 71 runs as wicketkeeper-batsman Matt Prior finishes unbeaten on 49
  • South Africa can now usurp England as No. 1 Test team with a 3-0 win against New Zealand
  • Pakistan the first team since 1907 to win a Test after scoring less than 100 in the first innings
Pakistan wrapped up a first series whitewash over top-ranked England on Monday by winning the third and final Test in Dubai by 71 runs, making history in the process.
The result, sealed with more than a day to spare, meant Pakistan became the first team since 1907 to win a Test after scoring less than 100 in their first innings.
South Africa can now become the world's No. 1 Test nation if they whitewash New Zealand in March's three-match series.
"I just can't explain this in words," Pakistan captain Misbah Ul-Haq told the host broadcaster after the match. "Getting out for 99, nobody thought we could come back.
"We should now learn to play well outside Asia, and this team can do that."
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England had resumed day four on 36-0, seeking 324 to win -- which would have been the team's second-highest final-innings run chase.
However, the batsmen continued their poor tour and collapsed to 252 all out as in-form spinner Saeed Ajmal and fast bowler Umar Gul took four wickets each.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Matt Prior offered some resistance with an unbeaten 49, a score that opener Alastair Cook matched.
England captain Andrew Strauss said the defeat should serve as a warning ahead of a two-match series with Sri Lanka, which starts at the end of March.
"When they were ahead, they didn't allow us to come back," he said. "We're a lot better at the end of the third Test, than at the start of the first. Test cricket is difficult by its nature. I've got great faith in our players but this is an eye-opener.
"There were some fantastic performances by some of the guys. We've got a lot of cricket coming up. There will be accusations flying about. I've got to try be ready for the Sri Lanka series."
England added only 12 runs before Strauss after was trapped leg before wicket by left-armer Abdur Rehman.
Jonathan Trott followed as England slipped to 85-2 and Kevin Pietersen continued his poor form by also making 18 before being removed by Ajmal.
Ajmal, who was the series' top wicket-taker with 24, denied Cook a half century before Gul tore into England's middle order.
His first victim was Ian Bell for 10, while Ireland-born Eoin Morgan made 31 to leave England 159-6.
It capped a disappointing series for Pietersen, Bell and Morgan, who scored less than 200 runs between them in the three matches.
When Ashad Shafiq caught Stuart Broad for 18 off the bowling of Gul, the writing was on the wall. Graeme Swann (1) fell to Gul soon after and Ajmal ended a stubborn ninth-wicket partnership of 34 when he had James Anderson caught at slip for nine.
A miserable series for England concluded when Rehman dismissed last man Monty Panesar for eight.
Panesar was one of England's few positives for the tour, taking 14 wickets in two Tests with his left-arm spin while Broad and Swann claimed 13 each.