EMERGING TEAMS ASIA CUP 2019
Pakistan beat arch rivals India by 3 runs in a nail biting semi-final to enter the finals of the Emerging Teams Asia Cup 2019 at the Shere Bangla National Stadium, Mirpur, Dhaka in Bangladesh on Wednesday. Pakistan will now meet the winners of Thursday’s second semi-final between Bangladesh and Afghanistan in the final on Saturday, November 23 at the same venue.
Having totaled 267 for 7 wickets in 50 overs, Pakistan fought tooth and nail and when it seemed the match had slipped off their grasp when India were well placed closing on the target on 179 for 3 off 31 overs, a gallant Pakistani outfit bounced back in style to claim a glorious victory by restricting India to 264 for 8 in 50 overs.
Pakistn’s bowling juggernaut spearheaded by Mohammad Hasnain with 2 for 61 and Saif Badar 2 for 57 bowled a tidy line and length to put the brakes on the Indians.
Setting the tone for the victory were openers Omar Yousuf top scoring with a 97 inclusive of 3 boundaries and 2 sixes and Haider Ali 43 with 5 boundaries and a six sharing in a 90-run alliance for the first wicket. It was the ideal platform followed by consolidating knocks of 47 from Saif Badar 47 and 35 by skipper Rohail Nazir with Imran Rafiq chipping in with a resolute 28.
India would be ruing throwing it away following the dismissal of Sanvir Singh who was run out for 76 containing 5 boundaries and a six as they declined to 211 for 5 by the 39th over.
Pakistan 267/7 (50 Overs) Run rate: 5.34
(Omar Yousuf 97, Haider Ali 43, Saif Badar 47, Rohail Nazir 35, Imran Rafiq 28, Shivam Mavi 2/53, H. Shokeen 2/59, S. Dubey 2/60)
India 264/8 (50 Overs) Run rate: 5.28
(Sanvir Singh 76, B.R. Sharath 47, Armaan Jaffer 46, C. Sutar n.o. 28, S. Badar 2/57, M. Hasnain 2/61)
By Srian Obeyesekere
-The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Sri Lanka Cricket-