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England crush Pakistan by 130 runs

England extracted sweet revenge for having been whitewashed in the Test series, crushing Pakistan by a massive 130 runs in the first one-day international in Abu Dhabi on Monday.

The two heroes of the night for England were skipper Alastair Cook, who scored a career-best 137 and pacer Steven Finn who claimed four scalps. Pakistan were all out for 130 in 35 overs, one run less than England's match-winning third-wicket partnership between Cook and Ravi Bopara.

It was thanks to Cook and his brilliant 137 that England could post a competitive 260 for seven in the day-night match and then Finn struck four times in an opening spell that saw Pakistan tottering at 40-4.

It was just the start to the four-match ODI series for England, after being humiliated in the three-match Tests to Pakistan.

Finn was the chief demolisher and was unlucky to miss out on a fifer. The lanky pacer struck in only his second over claiming the prized scalps of Mohammad Hafeez and Asad Shafiq with successive deliveries. He also had Imran Farhat and Younis Khan caught by wicketkeeper Craig Kieswetter to end any resistance Pakistan had to offer.

Spinner Samit Patel also contributed by first trapping Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq lbw for 14. He also picked up Shoaib Malik and Shahid Afridi, finishing with three for 26. Graeme Swann also had a good outing claiming two wickets.

For Pakistan, Shahid Afridi was the only one to offer any resistance with a quick-fire 28 from 22 balls.

Earlier, Cook made 137 for his third one-day hundred and added an invaluable 131 for the third wicket with Ravi Bopara (50) to help England recover from two successive wickets after they won the toss and batted.

Cook, whose previous best of 119 came against Sri Lanka at Lord's last year, hit 14 boundaries during a fluent 142-ball innings and shaped well against Pakistan's spin-dominated attack which routed England 3-0 in the preceding three-Tests series.

Given out leg-before off Mohammad Hafeez when 30, the 27-year-old left-hander successfully reviewed Australian umpire Siomn Taufel's decision and carried the batting until the 47th over when he was finally bowled by Saeed Ajmal who finished with a career-best 5-43.

England's ploy to open with Kevin Pietersen, who managed just 67 runs in the Tests, worked well as Cook and his new partner put 57 by the 13th over as Pakistan opened the bowling with paceman Umar Gul and Hafeez.

Pietersen though managed only 14 before he became one of two Shahid Afridi victim, bowled through the gate off a googly by the leg-spinner. Next ball Afridi dismissed Jonathan Trott with a sharp turner.

Bopara, who didn't play in the Tests, ably assisted his skipper as both took past England over the 100-run mark, sweeping and driving well against spinners. Cook reached his fifty off 57 balls with a swept boundary off Ajmal.

Bopara notched his seventh fifty in one-day off 67 delivery but two balls later jumped out to drive Ajmal and was stumped. He hit four boundaries.

Cook hit Afridi two fours to enter 90s and then cover drove Ajmal to the boundary to reach three-figure mark off 110 deliveries.

Ajmal continued to make merry against the English taking five for 43. His previous best of 4-33 was against New Zealand on this same ground in 2009.

The second match of the series is in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.

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