Jack Leach 'can't really believe' he has reached 100-wicket milestone for England

Jack Leach could not believe he now has 100 Test wickets to his name after England batted their way into a dominant position in the second Test against Pakistan.

The tourists ended the second day in Multan with a 281-run lead after capitalising on a spinning wicket in the morning session.

Leach finished with four wickets for 98 runs as the hosts crumbled to 202 all out, losing eight wickets for just 60 runs having started the day on 107 for two.

Saud Shakeel had just brought up his half-century when he became Leach's 100th Test scalp - with the spinner becoming the 49th English cricketer to reach the milestone.

"I can't really believe it. I didn't think that would ever happen so it's a nice milestone to get to - and just try and get another 100 now I guess," the England spinner said.

He added: "I did know coming into the game that I needed a couple of wickets (to get to 100), so it was a nice feeling - the boys were all really happy for me and just pleased to get a wicket in that situation of the game really.

"A hundred wickets feels like a lot and it's more than I ever thought I would achieve.

"So we need to remember that as sportsmen and as people it's easy to just push on to the next thing and the next thing and nothing is ever enough.

"But if you told me when I was a kid that I'd take 100 Test wickets then I would have laughed at you, so it is special."

Leach has been a mainstay of the England side under Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum but has had mixed fortunes for the national side since making his debut in 2018.

As a sufferer of Crohn's disease, which suppresses the immune system, Leach has had significant lows for England, including contracting sepsis which forced him to leave a tour of New Zealand in 2019.

He was among those affected by a viral infection which swept through the camp ahead of the first Test and admitted he was close to not being well enough to feature.

He explained: "I did think that it would be impossible I guess, just for me health-wise more than anything and I was quite close to not playing in the first Test.

"So there's lots of challenges. I'm aware that everyone has their challenges and I think mine have been quite 'out there' - and that's good because I want to be open and honest with people.

"There have been some definite lows along the way, but it does sort of make it all worth it."

Harry Brook finished the day unbeaten on 74 having looked confident and comfortable at the crease, with Ben Stokes also not out on 16 having come in at number seven.

Ben Duckett had hit 79 runs before he became debutant Abrar Ahmed's 10th scalp of the match in the evening session on day two on a pitch heavily favouring spin.

Leach believes the wicket bodes well for England as they look to set a total before attempting to bowl Pakistan out with three days remaining in the match.

"I think it (the wicket) is going to hopefully going to continue to do plenty and a few have got a bit lower as well, so (it's) looking good," he said.

"I think morning sessions as well are a bit tacky and it does get a bit quicker as well, so we'll have to think about that and then just take them (the wickets) hopefully."

Latest news