India v Pakistan, 2nd T20, Ahmedabad December 29, 2012

Yuvraj-Dhoni stand was the turning point - Hafeez

ESPNcricinfo staff

Mohammad Hafeez, the Pakistan Twenty20 captain, has said the 97-run partnership between Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni was turning point of the match, but also pointed to other significant moments where the visitors came out second best. "Although they went off to a promising start, we were hopeful of restricting them to 160-170… But Yuvraj was exceptional today. The way he batted was outstanding. He also struck a good partnership with Dhoni. We were not expecting the partnership to go that further," Hafeez said.

Yuvraj and Dhoni added 97 in just 44 balls to propel India to 192. Pakistan began promisingly in the chase but an 18-ball spell from India's spinners between overs seven and 10, during which only 16 runs were scored, increased the required-rate significantly. "It was a very small period in the match where we got stuck… Ravichandran Ashwin and Suresh Raina didn't give the batsmen any space to hit. It really did affect our run chase later in the match."

Ashok Dinda bowled an excellent second spell towards the death, picking up three wickets and containing Pakistan at a time when they had wickets in hand and were pushing for a win. "Their bowlers didn't perform well in the last couple of matches. But they did the basics right and were on target today," Hafeez said. "Dinda was good in the last two overs… He bowled perfect yorkers and it was difficult to hit him. In the penultimate over of our innings, he got the vital wickets of Kamran and mine. If either of us had scored a boundary, then it would have eased the pressure. Unfortunately, it didn't happen."

Yuvraj smashed seven sixes in his 72 off 36 balls. "It is just that in T20, you get less time to get set and you have straightaway start hitting the balls," Yuvraj said. "That is why batting averages aren't high and you don't get time to set in and hit those balls. But today, I got to bat in seventh over and got three to four overs to get set and that really made the difference."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • ZAHEER on December 29, 2012, 15:54 GMT

    Pakistan bowling was not upto the mark including gul despite of taking four wickets. and thats why they lost the match.

  • khurram on December 29, 2012, 9:10 GMT

    pakistan bowling was poor apart from irfan. gul got wickets but also on expensive side. in batting yes afer 1st 6 overs both openers specially shehzad was too slow in 7th - 10th over. shehzad should have pushed more. Hafeez didnt get any support . umar was also slow in that partnership in context of this game. he scored 15 of 11 while hafez was scoring 43 off 17.over all good batting effort from pakistan. most of people would have thought in inings break that its over for pak.

  • khurram on December 29, 2012, 9:08 GMT

    yuvraj & dhoni partnership was good but i think its dinda's 2 over spell in the end which won it for india. all others bowlers were going over 10 that time and he gave only 12 runs in 2 overs with 3 big wickets of hafez, kamran & umar. that was the game there.

  • Sachin on December 29, 2012, 7:41 GMT

    Nasir Jamshed, Azhar Ali, Mohd Hafeez, Younis Khan, Umar Akmal, Misbah-ul-Haq, Kamran Akmal, Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz, Saeed Ajmal, Junaid Khan. this teamm will be playing ODI matches and looks weak in comparsion of T-20 series, Azhar, Younis and Misbhah cannot play on same match they only needs any one of them, but Pakistan history of batting collapse should allow them to play 2 but not all 3 batsmen. Hafeez will be the only allrounder in playing XI and this will bring a lot of pressure on him and will affect his batting in succession, Mishbah needs to manage the work load of Hafeez and in Indian team Only one of the Sehwag and Gambhir should Play and Rahane should be the default openers as he deserve the chance more than those two. India should Play B.Kumar and S.Ahmed according to condition. Team: Sehwag/Gambhir, Rahane, Kohli, Yuvraj, Rohit, Raina, Dhoni, Ashwin, B.Kumar/S.Ahmed, Ishant, Dinda. India have the dangerous batting line and this gives a clear Edge to them over Pakistan.

  • Shiv on December 29, 2012, 6:53 GMT

    Full credit to the Indian bowlers. Inspite of loosing the toss n blowing in difficult dewy conditions they were able to restrict pak batsmen which their bowlers were unable to do though they had favourable conditions. Good that India lost the toss else whining would have started that toss decided the match.

  • manu on December 29, 2012, 6:38 GMT

    Exciting t20 series comes to an end n now looking forward to odi series...all d very best for both d teams but as an indian i want indian to win d series..

  • atlas on December 29, 2012, 6:25 GMT

    dinda said that nope not much of dew there.end of story.yes youraj played great.pak played awesom.where they played on road type of pitch.when bowler did not get help and indian smash then all over the park.but infact pak batting which suppose to be a weeker batting stood up they hit indian same which is good point for pak team.yes pak batting get a way india beware they will not feel you safe untill you bowled last bowl of the series.waiting of another cracker.

  • Khub on December 29, 2012, 5:43 GMT

    T20 series was very entertaining! thats y ind pak series is so ind hav 2 work ab8 their bowlng..they'v scored 193 bt still no able 2 manage a cm4tble victory, sm1 could say ab8 dew bt dew could nt b a factor 4 d real fast bwlers where they r struggling. if ind not able 2 recove that i think NEXT AUSTRALIA TEST SERIES could b another story of shameless failure!

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