No.1 team in the T-20 Internationals ranking Pakistan thrashed Australia on Thursday by 45 runs as they avenged the kangaroos for their massive defeat in the first game at the Harare Sports Club.
Mire remained in the thick of the action, sending Zaman on his way three short of his half-century, but Talat kept Pakistan ticking along and Sarfraz struck six boundaries as he and Shoaib Malik got their side over the line and into the final with a match to spare.
Australian seamer Andrew Tye admitted his disappointment after the loss. Sahibzada Farhan, much vaunted thanks to an impressive domestic record, made 0 off 0 on debut, stumped off a wide. With the asking rate well below eight, Pakistan were in control despite Haris Sohail’s struggle.
Hussain Talat’s place in the playing XI is not guaranteed.
The second leg of the ongoing T20I tri-series in Zimbabwe will commence on Wednesday as the hosts will take on Pakistan. Talat was then joined by skipper Sarfraz Ahmed as the duo added 43 runs for the third wicket.
He hit 15 off the 17th over, bowled by Marcus Stoinis, boosting Pakistan beyond 150. The returning Mohammad Amir started tidily, conceding just seven runs from his first two overs, and Zimbabwe made a circumspect start as the openers put on 49 in 46 deliveries when Zhuwao was bowled by Faheem Ashraf for 24.
“We have a very deep batting line-up, so we were confident we could chase it”, he said.
“We probably set our fields a bit wrong at times as well”. Chris Mpofu, who replaced the injured Kyle Jarvis, went for plenty against Australia and should they decide on a straight swap, Donald Tiripano might come into contention.
“This was a 170 wicket, we let them get away, our fielding was sloppy as well”.
Afridi swung and seamed the ball prodigiously to trouble the batsmen, also trapping Maxwell (10) lbw, and bowling D’Arcy Short (28) as Australia slipped to 75 for 5 in the 13th over.
Pakistan did manage to pull things back with wickets in the middle overs, and Australia’s Achilles heel – their middle order – was again shown up.