Kenstar tri-series December 27, 2003

Hafeez helps Pakistan A post first win

Wisden Cricinfo staff

Pakistan A 244 (Faisal 57, Naved 50) beat Sri Lanka A 196 by 48 runs

Mohammad Hafeez turned in a matchwinning performance with the ball as Pakistan A registered their first victory of the Kenstar tri-series with a 48-run victory over Sri Lanka A. Earlier, Faisal Iqbal and Naved Latif, who had hammered a hundred against the Indians, helped Pakistan post a defendable score on the board.

Sri Lanka A began the chase promisingly with Shantha Kalavitigoda, the opener, racing to a 47-ball 37. But he fell with the score on 75 and it was all downhill from then on. Hafeez claimed the vital wicket of Russel Arnold, who has been in cracking form, before getting rid of Thilana Kandamby and Nuwan Zoysa in his next two overs. Naveed Nawaz hung around for 78 minutes but his contribution of 47 counted for little in the end. Mohammad Khalil, the left-arm medium-pacer, had economical figures of 1 for 30 in his 10 overs but Hafeez's 3 for 29 turned things around.

Yet, the day began on a different note for Hafeez when he lasted only 7 balls for his duck. Salman Butt, the other opener, steadied the ship with 40 and support was forthcoming, first from Saeed Bin Nasir (35) and then from Faisal. After Butt's exit, Shahid Afridi followed suit, his second failure in as many matches, and it was left to Naved Latif to resurrect the innings along with Faisal. They added 85 in 10.5 overs and Naved brought up his 50 in just 39 balls, flavoured with four fours and two sixes. Faisal took the more sedate approach and stroked four fours in his 72-ball half-century. The Sri Lankan opening bowlers had a good day and MF Maharoof's 4 for 53 being the highlight.