A scintillating career-best 125* from Babar Azam and a clinical bowling performance helped Pakistan romped to a series-levelling victory, as they comfortably win the second ODI of the three-match series against West Indies by 74 runs at Providence Stadium in Guyana on Monday (April 10).
Chasing 283 for victory, West Indies faltered early as both of their openers fell just inside first five overs of the run-chase. Evin Lewis was adjudged lbw off Mohammad Amir, while Walton was accounted by Junaid Khan. In a sharp contrast to the previous game where they had kept wickets in hand for the latter stages, West Indies continued to attack Pakistan bowlers despite the fall of early wickets and were reduced to 56-5 at one stage, with most of their top order batsmen throwing their wickets away.
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The significant resistance came from the bat of Jason Holder, who struck a fighting half-century and forged an entertaining 58-run stand with Ashley Nurse (44) for the seventh wicket. But it was all too late for the hosts as Hasan Ali dismissed both of them to register figures of 5 for 38.
Earlier, Pakistan had posted 282 for 5 in their allotted 50 overs courtesy a late surge from Imad Wasim(43) and Babar Azam, who scored an unbeaten 125 off 132 balls. On a difficult, sluggish surface, Babar showed a great deal of maturity as he held the innings together from one end while others failed to get going. He accelerated immensely in the death overs to propel Pakistan to a respectable total, with as many as 74 alone coming off from the last seven overs.
Sarfraz Ahmed contributed a-run-a-ball 26, while Hafeez made a rather slow 32.
Shannon Gabriel was the pick of the bowlers for the visitors, as he returned figures of 2-50. Devendra Bishoo picked up 1-40, while Ashely Nurse’s numbers were 1-42.
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The stage is set for a terrific end to the short series on Tuesday, when the final match is scheduled.
WIvPAK, 2nd ODI, Match Summary:
Pakistan 282 for 5 (Babar 125*, Imad 43*) beat West Indies 208 (Holder 68, Hasan 5-38) by 74 runs
“There is always pressure after you lose the first game. A good team work. Babar batted well, Wasim finished well. The bowlers picked up wickets early as well. All the youngsters are coming up well. Shadab is improving everyday. We would want to correct a few mistakes. The wicket played really well in the first game and was slightly slow today. It is getting slower day-by-day.” — Sarfraz Ahmed, captain Pakistan, said.
“They probably got 20 runs too many. The top 6 didn’t fire for us. We needed one-two partnerships more upfront. We stress consistency. Getting those partnerships upfront is crucial to us. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get my team over the line. We did a few things right as well. Credit to the ground staff. The support is always good at Guyana.”Jason Holder, captain West Indies, said.