Pakistan pacemen Mohammad Abbas and Hasan Ali took four wickets apiece as England suffered yet another top-order collapse at Lord´s on Thursday.
Hopes that a return home and a rejigged top-order picked by new national selector Ed Smith would help rid England of the batting slumps that plagued them during a run of seven straight Tests without a victory in Australia and New Zealand quickly proved illusory as they were dismissed for just 184.
Abbas, in his first match at ´the home of cricket´, finished with excellent figures of four for 23 in 14 overs.
Meanwhile the recalled Hasan, who did not play in Pakistan´s win over Test debutants Ireland in Dublin concluded last week, took four for 51 in 15.2 overs.
Pakistan then consolidated the good work of their bowlers by reaching stumps having lost just Imam-ul-Haq to be 50 for one — a deficit of 134 runs.
Azhar Ali was 18 not out and Haris Sohail, missed in the slips when Ben Stokes dived across Dawid Malan, unbeaten on 21.
Alastair Cook in his 153rd consecutive Test, which equalled Australia great Allan Border´s all-time record for successive appearances at this level, was the only England batsman to play an innings of substance, the left-handed opener making 70.
The England opener led a fightback on the first day. At tea England were 165 for five, having slumped to 43 for three before lunch after home captain Joe Root had won the toss and batted.
Cook, in his 153rd consecutive Test, which equalled Australia great Allan Border´s all-time record for successive appearances at this level, revived England with a fine 70.
But shortly before tea he was bowled by Amir, a team-mate when Essex won the County Championship last season, as the left-arm quick produced a brilliant delivery that cut away late off the pitch late to clip the top of the opener´s off stump.
Cook faced 148 balls, including 14 fours
Ben Stokes was unbeaten on 36, having hoisted leg-spinner Shadab Khan for the first six of this match. Jos Buttler, recalled as a specialist number seven, was unbeaten on 13.
Root opted to bat first in the opening match of this two-Test series, despite the overcast conditions and a green-tinged pitch offering the promise of assistance for Pakistan´s pacemen.
Both England and Pakistan´s have concerns over their batting so it was a particularly bold decision by Root.
It certainly looked a good toss for Pakistan to lose as three members of an England top-order that repeatedly failed during winless winter Test tours of Australia and New Zealand all fell for single-figure scores.
But the work of team fielding coach Steve Rixon, the former Australia wicket-keeper, was rewarded when Asad Shafiq held a difficult catch at second slip edge after Jos Buttler, recalled as a specialist number seven, edged a drive off Hasan and fell for 14.
The innings ended when Amir held a well-judged catch running back at mid-on to dismiss Mark Wood.
It was the latest memorable Lord´s incident for Amir, who took six wickets in a Test innings at MCC´s headquarters in 2010 — the same match where his involvement in a spot-fixing scandal led to a jail
Here’s the HIGHLIGHTS of Match:
Azhar Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Haris Sohail. Asad Shafiq, babar Azam, Sarfraz Ahmed (c), Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Abbas.
AN Cook, MD Stoneman, JE Root (c), DJ Malan, JM Bairstow, BA Stokes, JC Buttler, DM Bess, SCJ Broad, JM Anderson, MA Wood.