Pakistan v Afghanistan, 1st under-19 ODI, Lahore January 21, 2014

Imam-ul-Haq ton crushes Afghanistan

ESPNcricinfo staff

Pakistan Under-19s 181 for 2 (Imam 106*, Shakeel 53*) beat Afghanistan Under-19s 180 (Shaidi 58, Ghulam 4-28, Gohar 3-38) by eight wickets

An unbeaten century by opening batsman Imam-ul-Haq helped Pakistan crush Afghanistan in the first of the three-match Under-19 ODI series in Lahore. Imam hit 15 fours and two sixes in his 91-ball 106 and added an unbeaten 129 for the third wicket with Saud Shakeel to overhaul Afghanistan's total with 14.1 overs to spare.

Chasing 181, Pakistan lost their first two wickets for 52 runs, but Imam and Shakeel not only prevented any further damage, they also kept scoring at a brisk pace. Imam reached his half-century - in 55 balls - with consecutive boundaries off Hashmatullah Shaidi, but then increased the pace further, reaching his hundred off the 88th delivery, an over before the finish. Shakeel, too, completed his half-century in the same over, reaching the landmark in 58 deliveries.

Barring Abdullah Adil, none of the Afghanistan bowlers were able to put a check on the scoring. It was in contrast to how Pakistan had operated after losing the toss. Left-arm seamer Zia-ul-Haq had batsman Ishanullah lbw off the fourth ball of the third over, after opener Shahidullah was run-out three balls earlier. A half-century stand between Shaidi and Usman Ghani lifted Afghanistan to 72 from 18 for 2, raising hopes of a 200-plus total. But once Ghani was dismissed, Afghanistan struggled to put together any other meaningful partnerships, eventually folding for 180 off the last ball of the innings. Left-arm spinner Kamran Ghulam chipped in with four wickets, while Zafar Gohar picked up three.