PAK vs AUS: Pakistan headed into today’s clash as clear favorites with everything in their hands right from a bunch of stellar batters accompanied with one of the best bowling attacks in the tournament. But all their positives couldn’t help them to yield the ‘ticket to the finale’ of the T20 World Cup 2021, thanks to the flourishing stand between Stonis & Wade in the death overs. Despite Shadab’s best efforts with the ball, Pakistan had to end up as the second best team as Australia chased 62 runs off 24 balls & stormed into the finals of the prestigious men’s T20 World Cup for the first time since 2010.
The Stoinis-Wade onslaught with the bat
Pakistan was already into the finals before Marcus Stoinis & Matthew Wade came together & pulled off a heist by scoring winning runs in the death overs. Australia needed 62 runs off the last five overs & it was a similar situation just like Semi-final 1 when New Zealand needed 72 runs off 36 balls to beat England. However, in Semi-final 2 the situation was slightly different as Australia lacked power-hitters in the middle who could chase the target for them.
But breaking the jinx, Matthew Wade & Marcus Stoinis rose to the situation & smashed 25 runs off Hasan Ali & Haris Rauf’s over & the target was reduced to 37 off 18. the task was still daunting for Australia however Matthew Wade showed his ‘powers’ & garnered 15 runs off the 18th over when he smashed a full-length ball from Hasan Ali for a maximum & then flicked a hit me ball for a four to change the momentum of the game in their favor. Then came Shaheen Afridi to bowl the 19th over & turn all the wrongs into rights.
Shaheen Afridi started by hitting a dot ball to Stoinis & then went for an LBW appeal which was canceled by a review. However, till then he just conceded just one run. The third ball of the second last over brought a golden opportunity for Pakistan to wrap up the match but Hasan Ali under pressure dropped the catch of Wade at deep square leg. This was another turning point of the game as after a dropped catch Wade become more aggressive in his approach & played two ramp shots off full balls for sixes. The hat-trick of sixes marked that Australia got successful in chasing the set target with an over to spare. The match was a throwback of the last time Australia made it to the final of the T20 World Cup in 2010 defeating Pakistan from a similar kind of situation into the semi-final.
Shadab Khan was an exception in Pakistan’s poor bowling attack
It was only ‘shadab khan’ who delivered with the ball for Pakistan in yesterday’s clash. Shadab struck at crucial points to keep Australia at backfoot in the chase. But all his effort went in vain as Pakistan’s death bowling attack couldn’t yield results when it mattered the most. It all started with Shaheen Afridi removing finch for a first-ball duck. Mitchell Marsh was also sent back to the pavilion off Shadab’s delivery when he miscue a slog sweep shot to Asif Ali at long leg.
There was a tussle going on between in-form Warner & Shadab Khan as the in-form Warner smashed the lethal spinner for a six right at the start of his second over. But Shadab didn’t stop there as he removed his partner Steve Smith at the other end. Shadab got the breakthrough in form of Warner’s wicket when the latter didn’t review the caught behind the decision, even as replays showed there was daylight between his bat and the ball. But that incision ended Warner’s murderous stay of 49 (30) and left Australia’s soft middle-order with a tall ask.
Shadab Khan went ahead to remove well-settled Glenn Maxwell. At 96 for 5 in the 13th over, Australia’s chase was almost over but Stoinis & Wade step up & took their side over the winning line with their magical 81 runs stand & sealed a win right in the 19th over.
PAK vs AUS: Pakistan started their Innings with a ‘bang’
Pakistan’s openers Babar Azam & Mohammad Rizwan started their innings with powerpack shots. The duo smashed fours & sixes to accelerate their innings in the powerplay. Without much effort, Pakistan reached 47/0 in six overs. This was the fourth time in six matches that Pakistan didn’t lose a single wicket in the powerplay & also marked their highest powerplay score in the World Cup so far.
The duo carried their onslaught with the bat & guided Pakistan to a total above 50 runs mark by adding 71 runs to the scoreboard before Adam Struck gave Australia their first breakthrough in the 10th over. Zampa was successful in removing dangerous Babar Azam who handed his wickets to David Warner at long for 39 runs. Pakistan was 71/1 after 10 overs with new batter Fakhar Zaman at the crease.
However, Pakistan was going strong with Rizwan on the crease. He smashed Australian bowlers such as Zampa with a boundary & a six in the 12th over followed by getting the better of Josh Hazlewood by producing massive runs to reach his third fifty of the T20 World Cup 2021. Their total crossed 100 runs mark in 14 overs with 9 wickets in hand. They were going well towards a competitive total.
Mohammad Rizwan & Fakhar Zaman teamed up to generate 73 runs for the 4th wicket with Zaman staying unbeaten on 55*. The duo sailed the innings at 10 runs per over and further aided the team total to cross above 150 runs.
Mitchell Starc crushed Pakistan’s dream…
Mitchell Starc came on the crease with a new game plan in his mind. He dismissed well set Rizwan for 67 runs & halted Pakistan’s run-machines in the 18th over. Asif Ali who saved Pakistan with his blistering cameos in their last two encounters failed to repeat the same & got out for a duck off Pat Cummins delivery.
Mitchell Starc scalped his second wicket of the match as he clean bowled the experienced Shoaib Malik for a duck & successfully retsricted Pakistan to 176/4 in 20 overs. Australia has scripted history by winning the second semi-final as the final of T20 World Cup 2021 will witness two teams who haven’t won a T20 World Cup yet competing for the glitzy trophy.
PAK vs AUS: Player of the match
Australia’s Matthew Wade was awarded as the ‘Player of the Match’ for his blistering knock of unbeaten 41* off 17 balls. Wade’s power-hitting helped Australia to script history by defeating Pakistan in the crunch Semi-final 2 & sealing a spot in the final of the T20 World Cup 2021 for the first time since 2010.
PAK vs AUS Brief Scores:
Pakistan 176/4 in 20 overs (Mohammad Rizwan 67, Fakhar Zaman 55*; Mitchell Starc 2-38) lost to Australia
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