David Warner’s unbeaten half century was enough to provide Australia with a six wicket win after their spin attack limited Pakistan to less than 100 from their allotted overs in a one-off T20 International in Abu Dhabi.
The opening batsman remained at the crease throughout his side’s innings as Australia successfully reached their target of 97 with 36 balls still to spare.
Earlier in the day, spinners Glenn Maxwell (3-13) and Cameron Boyce (2-10) helped limit just four Pakistan batsmen from reaching double figures as Shahid Afridi’s side amassed
Shahid Afridi – beginning his second spell as his country’s T20 skipper – won the toss and
elected to bat first, but his side failed to ever get going in their innings with a regular trickle of wickets.
It was Maxwell who produced the breakthrough in the third over. The big hitter showed that his bowling is an equally impressive addition to the Australian side by removing Awais Zia (3) before having Umar Amin stumped for a duck just three balls
The former Hampshire batsman then sent Sohaib Maqsood (0) back to the pavilion in his next over as he ended the day with figures of 3-13.
He received good support from Boyce who removed Ahmed Shehzad (10) as Pakistan soon slumped to 46-6.
Captain Afridi (2) was the sixth wicket to fall and Pakistan looked unlikely to get anywhere near triple figures with more than 10 overs still to spare.
Extras contributed 20 runs and Saad Nasim (25), Wahab Riaz (16) and Raza Hasan (13*) helped restore some pride for the sub-continent nation.
Afridi’s side closed on 96-9 after their allocated 20 overs, which resembled something of a comeback considering their awful start.
And the low total still forced Australia to face some troubling times with the loss of top order batsmen. Nevertheless, Warner (54*) batted throughout the innings to provide
His opening partner Aaron Finch (5) became the first batsman to fall to Raza Hasan in the third over.
That prompted the arrival of Maxwell at the crease, and the triple wicket taker scored several boundaries in a quick fire 17 before he was trapped LBW by Afridi.
Steve Smith was then sent on his way by Hasan an over later to leave the scoreboard reading 42-3.
But Warner smashed three sixes as he contributed more than half the runs required for victory to secure the win with six overs still to spare.
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