Pakistan’s 24-years-old right-handed batsman, Babar Azam, kept his calm even under pressure and scored 101* to end the Kiwis‘ winning streak and give them first defeat of this World Cup.
In the 33rd match of the ongoing World Cup played between New Zealand and Pakistan at Edgbaston match was delayed due to rain. After rain interruption, the New Zealand skipper, Kane Williamson won the toss and elected to bat first. But the decision backfired as the team lost five wickets at the score of 83 only. At this stage, all the blackcaps ‘big guns were in the pavilion.
After this initial destruction, all-rounders James Neesham and Colin de Grandhomme stitched a 132 runs partnership that helped New Zealand reach a respectable total of 237 runs in their 50 overs. James Neesham played a good inning of unbeaten 97 while Colin de Grandhomme scored classy 64 runs.
Young Pakistan left-handed bowlers; Shaheen Afridi was the top performer with the ball for the team. In his ten overs, he only conceded 28 runs and picked up three wickets.
With overcast conditions ahead, Pakistan didn’t get a good start as New Zealand speedsters Lockie Ferguson and Trent Boult showed both the Pakistan openers, Fakhar Zaman and Imam ul Haq the way back to the pavilion at a team total of 44 only. Following this destruction, the innings got impetus from Babar Azam who showcased his masterclass and was unbeaten in the end. With the help of 11 fours, the right-handed middle order batsman scored 101* off 127 balls. Apart from him, Haris Sohail brought up his second consecutive half-century and smacked 68 runs in 76 balls. Due to these two innings, Pakistan won the match comfortably and registered their 3rd victory of the tournament.
For New Zealand, no bowler other than Mitchell Santner bowled economically.
Man of the Match
Babar Azam was named ‘Man of the Match’ for his sensational ton.
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