Pakistan’s youthful side handed Australia their biggest defeat of 66 runs in the first twenty20 international to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.
Once Pakistan put 155-8 on the board courtesy Babar Azam’s 55-ball 68 not out and a 30-ball 39 by Mohammad Hafeez they were sure to get the best of Australia through their bowling led by 3-20 by returning boy Imad Wasim who took 3-20 to bowl Australia out for 89 in 16.5 overs.
Faheem Ashraf 92-10) and Shaheen Shah Afridi (2-23) were the others who shot Australia to their third lowest Twenty20 totals.
It was once again proven that Twenty20 cricket is for Youth and Pakistan’s inexperienced but youthful side was a better team on the turd on Wednesday.
Pakistan had lost Fakhar Zaman for 14 but Babar and Hafeez added 73 runs to lift the tempo. But once Hafeez fell in the 14th overs Pakistan were derailed by Billy Stanlake (3-21) and Andrew Tye (3-24) as six wickets fell for the addition of just 28 runs.
Faheem Ashraf, Imad and Sarfraz Ahmed all fell without scoring but Hasan Ali’s whirlwind 17 not out and Babar’s last five overs hitting lifted Pakistan to 41 runs in the last five overs.
When Australia batted they were shaken in the very first over by Imad who had Aaron Finch and D’Arcy Short in the very first over of the innings.
Chris Lynn and Glen Maxwell – the two biggest hitters in Twenty20 cricket — were cleaned up by Faheem who finished with 2-10.
It was left to Nathan Culter-Nile and Ashton Agar to add 32 for the seventh wickets that saved Australia from total collapse.
The second match is in Dubai on Friday while the final also in Dubai on Sunday.