There will be plenty spoken about the Pakistan batsmen, and rightly so. But this bowling attack have looked a superb batting track in the face and suckerpunched it with their rapid pace and unflinching accuracy. Amir took a wicket in his first over for the seventh time in his T20 career, opening up the stage for Afridi to come in with his variety of leggies, offies, seam-up and googlies.
It seems this World T20 doesn’t take too kindly to predictions. We thought Pakistan’s batting was brittle. Now we look up at the scoreboard and see three scores of 49 or more and a total of 201.
Pakistan batsmen showed wonderful performance and played very solid innings. Ahmed Shehzad scored 52 while Hafeez scored 64 runs. Afridi made quick 49 with 4 sixes and 4 fours, on just 19 balls.
“Definitely, we wanted to. The openers set the momentum and we continued with that,” says Hafeez, “Whatever the past was, we forgot that. We know we didn’t play well in the past couple of months. But this is a World t20 and everyone was charged up. The confidence came back after the warm-up. 201 on this pitch is a good total, but we still have to work hard. That’s what we wanted from Afridi. He took us to 200, we were happy with 180. Pressure will be on the batting side chasing 200. And we have a quality attack, we back ourselves to restrict them”
|Pakistan innings (20 overs maximum)||R||B||4s||6s||SR|
|Sharjeel Khan||b Arafat Sunny||18||10||1||2||180.00|
|Ahmed Shehzad||c Mahmudullah b Sabbir Rahman||52||39||8||0||133.33|
|Mohammad Hafeez||c Soumya Sarkar b Arafat Sunny||64||42||7||2||152.38|
|Shahid Afridi*||c Mahmudullah b Taskin Ahmed||49||19||4||4||257.89|
|Umar Akmal||c Shakib Al Hasan b Taskin Ahmed||0||2||0||0||0.00|
|Shoaib Malik||not out||15||9||2||0||166.66|
|Imad Wasim||not out||0||0||0||0||-|
|Extras||(lb 1, w 1, nb 1)||3|
|Total||(5 wickets; 20 overs)||201||(10.05 runs per over)|
|Shakib Al Hasan||4||0||39||0||9.75||5||4||1||(1w)|
|Bangladesh innings (target: 202 runs from 20 overs)||R||B||4s||6s||SR|
|Tamim Iqbal||c Imad Wasim b Shahid Afridi||24||20||0||2||120.00|
|Soumya Sarkar||b Mohammad Amir||0||2||0||0||0.00|
|Sabbir Rahman||b Shahid Afridi||25||19||5||0||131.57|
|Shakib Al Hasan||not out||50||40||5||1||125.00|
|Mahmudullah||c Sharjeel Khan b Imad Wasim||4||5||0||0||80.00|
|Mushfiqur Rahim†||c †Sarfraz Ahmed b Mohammad Amir||18||21||3||0||85.71|
|Mohammad Mithun||c Mohammad Amir b Mohammad Irfan||2||4||0||0||50.00|
|Mashrafe Mortaza*||not out||15||9||2||1||166.66|
|Extras||(lb 4, w 4)||8|
|Total||(6 wickets; 20 overs)||146||(7.30 runs per over)|
- Pakistan innings
- Powerplay: Overs 0.1 – 6.0 (Mandatory – 55 runs, 1 wicket)
- Pakistan: 50 runs in 5.3 overs (33 balls), Extras 2
- 2nd Wicket: 50 runs in 33 balls (Ahmed Shehzad 23, Mohammad Hafeez 27, Ex 1)
- Pakistan: 100 runs in 11.2 overs (68 balls), Extras 2
- Ahmed Shehzad: 50 off 35 balls (8 x 4)
- Mohammad Hafeez: 50 off 36 balls (4 x 4, 2 x 6)
- Pakistan: 150 runs in 15.4 overs (95 balls), Extras 3
- Pakistan: 200 runs in 19.5 overs (120 balls), Extras 3
- Innings Break: Pakistan – 201/5 in 20.0 overs (Shoaib Malik 15, Imad Wasim 0)
- Bangladesh innings
- Powerplay: Overs 0.1 – 6.0 (Mandatory – 45 runs, 2 wickets)
- Bangladesh: 50 runs in 6.2 overs (38 balls), Extras 4
- Bangladesh: 100 runs in 15.2 overs (92 balls), Extras 5
- Shakib Al Hasan: 50 off 40 balls (5 x 4, 1 x 6)
6.43 pm There will be plenty spoken about the Pakistan batsmen, and rightly so. But this bowling attack have looked a superb batting track in the face and suckerpunched it with their rapid pace and unflinching accuracy. No was offered to the Bangladesh batsmen. Cramped up and crumbled up, Bangladesh were out of it by the halfway stage. Only Sabbir looked like threatening the total, but Shakib’s fifty may work for them leading into the tournament.
For Pakistan, Amir took a wicket in his first over for the seventh time in his T20 career, opening up the stage for Afridi to come in with his variety of leggies, offies, seam-up and googlies – 2 for 27 and 49 off 19 balls. Shoo in for the Man of the Match, and here he is.
“My performances play a key role, but I was hungry. I was keen to perform well for my country in this event,” says Afridi. “Its a big event as captain, as senior player, I had to lead by example. I spoke to the coach and he said okay. I love to give chances to the rest of the batsmen, but sometimes. I think from the last two three series, the batsman struggled to find runs. First six overs was important and Hafeez and Shehzad did very well. That was what we missed in the batting, the partnerships. Openers are very important, Shehzad and even Sharjeel can be very attacking too, If he stays first six overs, the team will have 50-60. I expect them to perform well, as a captain. I don’t want to talk about the past, we should learn from our mistakes and India have been playing good cricket, even with the last loss. Captaincy is not an easy job, but when the team gives you 100 percent, I enjoy it. People expect me to bat and ball as well and I enjoy both”
“Two hundred is always difficult with Pakistan bowling attack. And after six overs it was almost impossible. Shakib batted very well and we got 150, so its not that bad,” Mortaza says. “We have to bowl better, we didn’t bowl well today. First six overs we couldn’t get much runs with the bat either. You can’t practice much, you have to be mentally strong. With Australia’s batting, it will be hard and Bangalore wicket will be flat. Bowling group must bring better plans. Mustafiz is getting better, hopefully he will be back”
And with that, Bangladesh topple to the bottom of the Group 2 table. Their run-rate is -2.75. This is a tough group to survive and it is very likely run-rate will be deciding who goes through. Mashrafe Mortaza and his side have a lot of thinking to do.