Saturday's pivotal day of the first Test match gave a third successive 30,000-plus capacity crowd a feast of rich entertainment with Mohammad Yousuf scoring a unbeaten 185 to show what a simple art batting can be.
He managed one century in his first 19 Tests but then started a three-figure charge that brought him 16 in his next 45 matches, including three doubles and, including Saturday, three more over 150. He has the perfect game plan; he knows his strengths and plays to them. No flashy improvisation and he never yields to temptation, such as taking on any short stuff - not even in his seventh hour at the crease.
The entire innings revolved around him and he gave a masterclass in the construction of his knowledge, brick by brick. He got to 50 off 79 balls, his 17th 100 took him 78 more with the third 50 the slowest of all as he set his stall out to see out the day - he faced 87 balls to go from 100 to 150.
Coincidentally, his 100 came off 157 balls, precisely the number faced by Paul Collingwood to show that there is more than one way of putting together a major innings.
Collingwood has a bottom-handed method in direct contract to Mr Elegance, who caressed the ball all around St John's Wood.
He shared partnerships with Inzamam ul-Haq, Abdur Razzaq and Kamran Akmal of 173 in 41 overs, 59 in 20, and 82 in 18 respectively, and Andrew Strauss was at full stretch all day trying to get the best out of a four-man attack. The England captain was under the mathematical handicap of being limited to six pairings of this three pace bowlers plus Monty Panesar, whereas a fifth bowler would give him ten pairings - a big increase in variety as well as a lightening of the workload.
Nightwatchman Mohammed Sami was caught behind in the second over of the morning but that was to be England's last success for three hours and 41 overs. Inzamam is the strong silent type who likes nothing better that batting during his waking hours. He rarely speaks in the middle, which may explain a deserved reputation for erratic running between the wickets, particularly with Yousuf with whom he has quite a record.
England toiled away either side of lunch but the longer they bowled the more it seemed that a run out was the best chance. Once Inzamam is in he becomes immoveable, and the fifth-wicket pair both average over 50 in Test cricket. That is the benchmark that separates the great from the good.
Lunch came at 165 for four after a morning session of 99 for one wicket off 29 overs.
The afternoon ominously wore on until Liam Plunkett fluked a wicket, and that is not being unkind to a youngster coming to terms with cricket at this level. He banged one in short enough for Inzamam to move over the crease but the expected bounce that would enable the ball to track six inches did not materialise and top of leg stump was clipped.
Inzamam dragged himself off, unhappy that he was out for "only" 69, although it was his eighth consecutive score of over 50 against England. He has put together a remarkable Bradmanesque run in those innings of an average of 99.5.
Razzaq and Akmal came in ahead of Shahid Afridi because Pakistan needed to build a total rather than smash the ball around and the tactic paid off, as they moved from 241 for five to 409 for seven at close of play.
Razzaq fell to a perfect float ball from Steve Harmison to bring in Akmal, who is already rivalling Adam Gilchrist in the echelon of destructive wicketkeeper-batsmen in world cricket.
He go to 50 off 69 balls, including seven fours, and was 58 when an inspired bowling change by Strauss brought on Kevin Pietersen who had previously bowled only two overs in Test cricket. It worked magically as, five minutes before the end of the day, Akmal edged to Geraint Jones to leave the match nicely poised with two full days to go and the deficit down to 119.