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Pakistan score easy win
April 04, 2003 00:21 IST
Pakistan won the opening match of the quadrangular series in Sharjah beating Zimbabwe by 68 runs on Thursday.
Replying to Pakistan's total of 278 for seven, Zimbabwe were bowled out for 210 in 44.1 overs. The wickets were shared among the young Pakistani bowlers.
For Zimbabwe only Douglas Marillier (59) provided some resistance while the wickets tumbled around him.
Abdur Razzaq (76 runs and 2 wickets) was adjudged the man-of-the-match for his brilliant all-round performance.
Earlier, Abdul Razzaq and Younis Khan slammed blazing half-centuries as Pakistan recovered from a poor start to score 278 for seven.
Razzaq cracked a scintillating unbeaten 76 off 53 balls with two fours and seven sixes while Khan weighed in with 67 (off 84 balls with three fours and two sixes) as Pakistan rattled 96 runs in the last 10 overs.
The late flourish from the Pakistan batsmen came after they had been reduced to 101 for five by the 25th over.
Khan helped steady the innings with a sixth-wicket partnership of 58 with skipper Rashid Latif (34). He then put on another 44 with Razzaq before being caught by Sean Ervine off the bowling of Andy Blignaut.
But it was Razzaq, who together with Mohammad Sami (11) put on 75 runs in just 35 balls in an unbeaten eighth wicket stand, who snatched the initiative away from Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe skipper Heath Streak struck two early blows when he removed both the openers -- Taufeeq Umar (16) and debutant Mohammad Hafeez (12) -- to put Pakistan on the backfoot.
Inspired by their skipper Blignaut and Ervine exploited the advantage to keep the Pakistan batsmen in check.
Two run outs -- that of Shoaib Malik and Rashid Latif -- added to the woes of a new-look Pakistan side, who struggled on a slow wicket in the absence of eight senior players who were dropped following a dismal showing at the World Cup.
But Razzaq's storming late hitting leaves Zimbabwe facing a daunting total. Blignaut conceded 16 runs in one over while Ervine and Douglas Hondo went for 24 and 23 respectively to let Pakistan off the hook.