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Pakistan keep hope of moving to next round alive by beating Canada by seven wickets in T20 World Cup
Photo Courtesy: ICC X page

Pakistan keep hope of moving to next round alive by beating Canada by seven wickets in T20 World Cup

| @indiablooms | 12 Jun 2024, 09:30 am

After two back-to-back defeats, Pakistan kept their hopes of reaching Stage 8 of the T20 World Cup by beating Canada by seven wickets on Tuesday.

After restricting Canada to 106 runs for the loss of three wickets, Pakistan reached the winning target of 107 runs for the loss of three wickets.

Aaron Johnson hammered 52 runs in his 44-ball knock which helped Canada cross the 100-run mark.

Pakistan went into the match knowing that they needed a win at the Nassau County International Stadium, and quite possibly by a significant margin, to get their campaign back on track with one more group fixture (against Ireland) to follow.

Pakistan suffered a shock defeat in the opening match against the USA which triggered a drama in the group.

Pakistan made one change to their line-up, bringing in Saim Ayub up the order in place of Iftikhar Ahmed, while Canada named Ravinderpal Singh in place of Dilpreet Bajwa.

Experienced fat bowler Amir made an early breakthrough with a terrific ball demolishing the stumps of Navneet Dhaliwal, leaving Canada 20/1 after three overs.

Shaheen Shah Afridi - who went for ten runs in the first over of the innings - benefited from a smart change of ends, striking with the very first ball from the other end as Pargat Singh edged to Fakhar Zaman, and leaving Canada on 29/2 after the first ball of the sixth over.

Canada kept losing wickets at regular intervals.

Nicholas Kirton was sent packing, run out after scoring a single, courtesy of swift thinking from Imad Wasim and ending a potentially fruitful partnership with Aaron Johnson.

And Haris Rauf tempted Shreyas Movva to nick on to wicketkeeper Rizwan - securing his 100th wicket in T20 internationals.

The 101st was not too long in following, coming two balls later as new batter Ravinderpal Singh edged to slip, and by the end of the tenth over Canada were 55/5.

Johnson did manage to lead a brief resurgence, with 52 off 44 balls, before being bowled decisively by Naseem Shah.

And captain Saad bin Zafar was next to fall, with another thick edge behind to Rizwan off Amir.

Kaleem Sana and Dilon Heyliger took Canada over the century mark, giving Pakistan a target of 107 to win - although they will also be aware that they need to consider net run-rate if they are to make it through to the next stage of the tournament.

Pakistan bowlers were in good form at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium against Canada.

After a slow-scoring first three overs, Saim Ayub made an effort to push it on, and got a scare when he lofted a no-look shot towards Dhaliwal who palmed the ball away rather than closing his fingers around it.

And in the fifth over Saim got his marching orders, edging Heyliger through to wicketkeeper Movva for just 6 runs.

The experienced duo of Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan looked set fair to steer Pakistan to victory, with a partnership of 63 from 62 balls.

But Heyliger struck again, luring Babar to an edge behind for 33 to make the last five overs even tougher.

Rizwan got the job done, though, making an unbeaten 53, despite new partner Fakhar holing Gordon out to the substitute fielder Dilpreet Bajwa with just three more runs required.
Pakistan's last outing in the tournament was against India where the arch-rival beat them in a thrilling encounter.

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