Mighty Raza and never-say-die Zimbabwe leave Pakistan on the brink

28 Oct, 2022 - 00:10 0 Views
Mighty Raza and never-say-die Zimbabwe leave Pakistan on the brink Chevrons got the better of Pakistan.


Babar’s men stumble in a chase of 131 and will need other teams’ help to stay alive in the T20 World Cup.

Zimbabwe 130 for 8 (Williams 31, Wasim 4-24, Shadab 3-23) beat Pakistan 129 for 8 (Masood 44, Raza 3-25, Evans 2-25) by one run

Zimbabwe promised to cause as much damage as they could in the Super 12s and, two games in, they have inflicted a major blow. They defended 130 to deny Pakistan their first points and leave them at risk of not making the semi-finals, and they did in extraordinary fashion.

After a strong start in their batting, they slipped to 95 for 7 and set Pakistan a modest target on a pitch with good bounce and a big outfield. 

But Zimbabwe have an understated and varied attack and they gave Pakistan’s – which Shadab Khan proudly proclaimed the best in the tournament – competition for that label.

Zimbabwe’s pacers removed Pakistan’s openers in the first five overs before Luke Jongwe dismissed Iftikhar Ahmed to leave the score at 36 for 3. Shan Masood and Shadab got the chase back on track with a 52-run fourth-wicket stand but then came the surprises.

Sikandar Raza, in the form of his life, took two wickets in two balls and another in his next over to leave Pakistan on 94 for 6.

 Still, they should have fancied their chances. Pakistan needed 38 runs in the last five overs; Zimbabwe scored 32 in theirs. 

The equation was more than doable. It still was at three needed off three but try telling Brad Evans that. Playing his first game of this World Cup, the fast bowler went W W 1 to flip the whole entire script.

And now Pakistan are hanging by a thread. They need to win all of their remaining games, and hope South Africa lose to India, if they are to make the semi-finals.

The final drama

Pakistan needed 29 runs off the last three overs, then 22 off the last two and then the tension was broken when Mohammad Nawaz slammed a Richard Ngarava full toss over fine leg for six. 

Zimbabwe’s win probability plummeted from 71 percent before Nawaz’s strike to 34 percent after. The game seemed gone.

Evans had 10 runs to defend off the final over. His first ball was a half volley that found the gap between mid off and extra cover. Nawaz and Mohammad Wasim ran three. His second ball was a back-of-the-hand slower ball. Wasim hit it over mid-off for four. His third ball was slower again, on fifth stump, and it was over Evans but only as far as mid-off. Pakistan had one more, and needed only three off the last three balls.

Evans beat Nawaz’s cut with his fourth ball. Three off two needed. Then Nawaz tried to hit him over mid-off and found the Zimbabwean captain Craig Ervine, who took the catch at head height. Three off one. Shaheen Shah Afridi was sent in to try to find the winning run but drove the ball to long-on and ran. The fielder was standing closer in, to prevent two and swooped on it. The throw came into to Regis Chakabva, who fumbled and then broke the stumps. Zimbabwe, in the unlikeliest of circumstances, had won. — cricinfo.com

Share This:

Sponsored Links