rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » Cricket » Akmal, spinners win it for Pakistan

Akmal, spinners win it for Pakistan

March 24, 2014 08:08 IST

The tag of unpredictably follows Pakistan at the start of every tournament. So when they faced Australia in Sunday's World T20 match, many expected the latter to steamroll them considering two facts.

- Scorecard

One, Pakistan were beaten by India in their opening; two, Australia form was encouraging.

Australia's skipper George Bailey won the toss and elected to bowl first. And when Pakistan were two wickets for 25, they looked in control.

- PHOTOS: India v West Indies; Pakistan v Australia

In came Umar Akmal, a batsmen who has immense talent but done little to justify it.

Akmal and his brother Kamran took the attack to the opposition, smashing the bowlers to all corners.

Umar was the aggressor as he made his intentions pretty clear with a boundary off Nathan Coulter-Nile off the seventh ball he faced.

After that he was unstoppable, playing some exquisite shots while wickets were falling around him.

The dashing No. 4 hit couple of boundaries off Coulter-Nile and then smoked Shane Watson in the next over.

He soon reached his half-century with couple of sixes and boundary off Aaron Finch from just 28 balls.

He scored 94, and Pakistan posted a handsome 191 for 5.

Australia began on a disastrous note, but then Glen Maxwell changed the equation for them.

His blitz took Pakistan's bowlers by surprise.

However Shahid Afridi, in his comeback spell, provided the much-needed breakthrough as he had Maxwell caught at the boundary by Ahmed Shehzad for a 33-ball 74.

After that the Pakistan bowlers took control of the game and strangulated Australia's batsmen to eventually win by 16 runs.

Image: Umar Akmal

Photograph: Scott Barbour/Getty Images