Pakistan demolished the Aussies; wrap them up for just 89
Aussies batting line had no answer to some serious bowling by Pakistanis in the first game at Abu Dhabi played after the test series. It was Imad Wasim and Fahim Ashraf who started the tale followed by other bowlers and finished the job inside 17 overs. Earlier Babar Azam and Hafeez gave Pakistan a much needed stability and make Pakistan comfortable to reach at a defendable total. No doubt Pakistan is the number 1 T20 International team and they proved it tonight.
Only one thing was in the favor of Aussies a toss, they won it and decided to bowl first on a good batting strip. Pakistan off to a good start with fakhar Zaman and Babar Azam, they scored 32 runs in four overs, Fakhar Zaman tried to hit Stanlake over the long-on but failed to execute and lost his wicket. Babar joined by the experienced pro Muhammad Hafeez at the crease. Both Hafeez and Babar put 73 runs partnership and Pakistan was threatening to go beyond 170 at one occasion, right after the loss of the wicket of Hafeez, Pakistan went through a nightmare of losing quick wickets (105-1 to 133-8) and could only score 155, thanks to Hasan Ali’s 17 off 8 balls and Babar Azam who kept his calm (remained unbeaten at 68 off 55). Stanlake and Andrew Tye picked up three wickets each for Australia.
At the halfway stage, everyone was commenting that Pakistan is probably 15-20 runs short. But those things went totally wrong, when Imad Wasim picked up the wickets of Australian openers in very first over of the run-chase. It was Imad Wasim’s first International game for some 12 months. He announced his return to the International cricket, with two big wickets in his first over when Finch and Short bowled out by him. Things for Australia went further wrong when they lose two more wickets in the fourth over of the innings, Maxwell tried a shot which was never on and he totally missed the ball of Fahim Ashraf and bowled out on 2 off 7. Ben McDermott tried to snatch a run but unfortunately he wasn’t able to be succeeded, Fakhar did a brilliant job to hit the stumps left Australia 16 for 4. Things went more denouncing when they lose two more wickets in 5th and 6th overs of Alex Carey and Chris Lynn to Fahim and Imad respectively. It was the first occasion when Pakistani bowlers took 6 wickets in the power play. Only Nathan Coulter-Nile (34 off 29) and Ashton Agar (19 off 23) scored few runs freely, rest of
the Aussies were looked out shape and whole team went back to the pavilion at 89 runs, which assured Pakistan’s victory by 66 runs.
Player of the Match: On his brilliant bowling inside power play Imad Wasim was awarded as a player of the Match.
Imad Wasim: “My hard work paid off. It is never easy to make a comeback. I got unfit in PSL and after that I could only play in CPL and I played some domestic matches. I wanted to stick to my basics and wanted to target the stumps. I was lucky today that I got the wickets. All the training that I did has come off. I want to carry this form.”
Pakistan 155 for 8 in 20.0 overs (Babar Azam 68, Muhammad Hafeez 39; Billy Stanlake 21/3, Andrew Tye 24/3)
Australia 89 all out in 16.5 overs (Nathan Coulter-Nile 34; Imad Wasim 20/3, Fahim Ashraf 10/2)
Next Encounter: Second T20 International match at Dubai on 26th October 2018.
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