Alastair Cook has finally returned to form with his second innings against Pakistan in the third test at the Oval.

England started the days play having lost Andrew Strauss just before the end of play yesterday. England were 6/1 at the close and Pakistan were ahead with 308 runs in their first innings, outshining England's 233.

The home side sent in James Anderson as the night watchman and both he and Cook took to the crease this morning, with Cook especially under pressure having failed to perform so far in this series.

Anderson managed to survive a few overs but was eventually caught out for 11 by Kamran Akmal, following a ball from Saeed Ajmal.

Jonathan Trott joined Cook at the crease and the pair managed to successfully hold off the best of Pakistan's bowlers, building up a good score for England in the process.

Trott managed to score 15 runs before lunch but Cook was the real star, passing his half century with ease and reaching 76 not out, thanks to a dozen fours and a flurry of singles.

At lunch England were 110/2 not out and led Pakistan by 35 runs.