Mohammad Rizwan made 46 before Mohammad Hafeez helped seal a seven-run victory with 4-1-6-1 against West Indies
Pakistan 157 for 8 (Azam 51, Rizwan 46, Holder 4-26) beat West Indies 150 for 4 (Pooran 62*, Hafeez 1-6) by seven runs
Nicholas Pooran made his highest T20I score of 62 runs off 33 balls, but with no other West Indian striking at a rate of above 107, the hosts, chasing 158, went down by seven runs against Pakistan in the second T20I in Guyana.West Indies were strangled by Mohammad Hafeez’s accurate offbreaks and Shadab Khan’s mix of legbreaks and googlies, and the loss of regular wickets kept them behind in the chase. Hafeez’s four-over spell at an economy of 1.50 earned him the Player-of-the-Match award, though Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan, too, made strong claims to that prize.
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Azam, the only other half-centurion on the day, scored a 40-ball 51 that helped Pakistan cruise through the middle overs. With Rizwan, who made a 36-ball 46, Azam put on a 67-run second-wicket partnership. It set the tone for Pakistan to post a total well beyond the 157 they eventually achieved, but Jason Holder – who picked a four-wicket haul – and Dwayne Bravo kept taking wickets in the death overs to keep the visitors’ hard-hitting middle and lower order quiet.
Rizwan-Babar show their class
With Sharjeel Khan falling for a promising 16-ball 20, it was well inside the powerplay that Pakistan’s two most prolific batters of the last year got together. Initially, Azam was the slower one between the two as Rizwan punished Akeal Hosein for two sixes and followed it up with a four off Bravo.
Azam then found two boundaries off Romario Shepherd – playing instead of Andre Russell – through the leg side to get his day going, and despite accumulating a few dots thereafter, he found a way to break the rut. Hayden Walsh Jr’s googly was pulled for six, his half-tracker was cut for four, and in the space of a few overs, Azam had raced away to 41 in 33 balls.
All this while, Rizwan was content dabbing the ball for ones and twos while Azam changed gears. But, in the 15th over, Rizwan then fell victim to a direct-hit four runs short of a ninth T20I fifty. Azam had tapped a ball to the vacant midwicket and called early for the two, but a top effort from Evin Lewis to hit the non-striker’s stumps while the batters scurried for a second sent Rizwan back. However, Rizwan’s 46 was enough for him to earn the distinction of being the most prolific T20I batter in any calendar year with five months still to go in 2021. In the following over, Azam hit Shepherd for six to reach his fifty in 38 balls. A rain interruption followed soon after.
Pakistan collapse after rain
The rain break was short, and when Pakistan returned with four overs to go with the score 134 for 2, there was a genuine chance for them to aim for over 180. But Azam fell right then, out caught behind in a contentious decision where it appeared the bat may have hit the ground – and not the ball – but the umpire deemed it fair.
Bravo then picked up Hafeez and Fakhar Zaman in quick succession, followed by Holder removing Hasan Ali and Sohaib Maqsood, with Shepherd taking a one-handed stunner from by the boundary line. Eventually, Pakistan added just 23 in their last 24 balls to stutter to 157.
More to follow…
Sreshth Shah is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo. @sreshthx
Source Link : https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/pakistan-tour-of-west-indies-2021-1263146/west-indies-vs-pakistan-2nd-t20i-1263165/match-report?ex_cid=OTC-RSS
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