Pakistan v Australia, 1st MCC Spirit of Cricket Twenty20, Edgbaston

Umar blitz sets up Pakistan victory

The Report by Brydon Coverdale at Edgbaston

July 5, 2010

Comments: 179 | Text size: A | A

Pakistan 167 for 8 (Umar Akmal 64) beat Australia 144 (Warner 41, Ajmal 3-26, Aamer 3-27) by 23 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details


Umar Akmal powered Pakistan with a boundary-laden 64, Australia v Pakistan, 1st Twenty20, Edgbaston, July 5, 2010
Umar Akmal's 64 set up Pakistan's win © Getty Images
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It can't bring back the World Twenty20 trophy, but Pakistan extracted some sort of revenge on Australia in their first meeting since the semi-final in St Lucia. Again, a vigorous Umar Akmal half-century set up Pakistan's innings but this time their bowlers, led by Mohammad Aamer, did enough to strangle Australia's run-rate and deny Michael Clarke's men, who couldn't chase down 168.

In May, it took something special from Michael Hussey to drive Australia into the decider against England, as he monstered the 18 needed off the last over, bowled by Saeed Ajmal. This time, Ajmal fittingly collected the final wicket and was mobbed by his team-mates as Australia fell to a 23-run defeat, their first loss to Pakistan in any format in their past 13 meetings.

Umar set up the victory with the fastest Twenty20 international half-century by a Pakistan player, a 21-ball effort that brought the thousands of Pakistan fans at Edgbaston to their feet. Their 167 for 8 looked competitive but gettable, and when David Warner scythed five boundaries from Shoaib Akhtar's first five balls, Australia appeared to be in charge.

But once the field went back, and Shahid Afridi and Umar Gul came on, the runs dried up. Gul delivered yorker after yorker, and Afridi altered his pace and angle to keep Warner and David Hussey guessing during their 52-run stand. Hussey had 34 from 28 balls when he skied Afridi to mid-on, and Warner followed in the next over.

Warner's 41 from 31 was more restrained than his usual Twenty20 efforts, with the attack on Akhtar his only period of dominance. Ajmal, the unlucky man asked to bowl the final over in St Lucia, deceived Warner with a ball that went straight on, beat the bat and crashed into the stumps. That brought Michael Hussey to the crease, but there were no heroics this time.

The Australians needed some top-order support for Warner; instead, Michael Clarke's dismal Twenty20 batting record continued. He was caught for 5, trying to force Abdul Razzaq through cover and it is now eight innings since he has scored better than a run a ball in a Twenty20 for his country.

Aamer (3 for 27) began the strong bowling effort by trapping Shane Watson lbw in the first over of the chase, before he returned to snare the key wickets of Cameron White and Steven Smith. With every wicket the Pakistan fans roared and blasted on their air horns, just as they had during Umar's batting blitz.

The highlight of his 64 was a pair of sixes straight down the ground off Smith, but his ability to the find the gaps and invent ways of scoring was remarkable. It takes a brave man to paddle sweep a Dirk Nannes full toss off middle stump, but Umar made it look like the most logical selection of stroke and ran the ball to the fine-leg boundary.

He departed in the 19th over, bowled by Shaun Tait, but by then he'd done enough. Umar was the star, but he had good support from Shoaib Malik in a 51-run stand that included 20 off one over, as Malik launched a stinging attack on David Hussey's offspin.

Malik was out in unusual fashion when he edged a slow bouncer behind off Nannes and the batsmen took a cheeky single, only for replays to show that Tim Paine had completed the catch diving forward. Pakistan looked like they might not even bat out their overs after they stumbled to 47 for 4 in the eighth over.

Umar's recovery won Pakistan the game, and earned him the Man-of-the-Match award. There was no world trophy on offer, but the win will give Pakistan confidence ahead of their long tour of England. And a confident Pakistan is a dangerous Pakistan.

Brydon Coverdale is a staff writer at Cricinfo

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Posted by BoomBoom_Khan on (July 8, 2010, 18:40 GMT)

@rajeevsingh, man i love your enthusiasm for the game, Indian cricket and India I wish I could offer you more assistance but as a reward I will promise you that we will take good care of Sania Mirza for ya ;-)

Posted by SnowSnake on (July 8, 2010, 15:09 GMT)

@Nick Giannakis: Sorry, I am not a jealous kind of guy. Neither I take too much pride in my of someone elses nationality. Even if I were poorest of poor Indian and you were richest of rich Australian, I would not belittle myself or praise you. It is just not my thing. @Settinsun: I did not compute the speeds in ODI so frankly I don't know tait's balling speeds. I just reported what I saw in 1st T20ODI and my comments are limited to that T20 only. I aplologize for typos because I am working off a French Keyboard from Internet Cafe in Montreal and it is hard find to delete key (is it demarrer or arret veille or veille).

Posted by neds85 on (July 7, 2010, 19:21 GMT)

@rasghar786 and rajeevsingh...Guys dnt fight , Both teams i.e Pakistan and India are very talented , both teams have got world class players, its true rajeev Pakistan cricket is suffering by all means but still we have performed exceptionally well against India , Please see the record of Last 4 ODI's Played between the two teams:

Kitply cup(Tri nation series in Bangladesh) , Jun 2008, Pakistan beat India. Asia cup , jun-jul 2008 , Pakistan beat India. Icc Champions Throphy ,Sep-Oct 2009 , Pakistan beat India. Asia cup ,2010 , India beat Pakistan.

Plus we won the T20 WC last year, and Team india, couldn't even qualify for 2nd round of WC in 2nd and 3rd T20 WC...I m a Pakistani and i love both(PAK and IND) Teams.

Posted by   on (July 7, 2010, 16:20 GMT)

Pakistani team is proud of me and I love the Pakistani team, but the Pakistan team will have to prove themselves all over the world, and will remain steadfast and make the game superman, my pray is always with you. Pakistan Zindaabad

Posted by rajeevsingh on (July 7, 2010, 7:47 GMT)

Rasghar786, If you want to live in the past, please do so. The important thing is what the team is achieving today and not 15 or 20 years back. Have a look at the record of Ind-Pak matches in the past 5 years. Do not forget the 4-1 pasting that India gave the Pakis and the 2-1 test series win in Pakistan. Then the final of the 20-20 final in South Africa and then the Asia cup. We know the full history of Sharjah where Pakistan have won more than 90% of their matches, most of which were fixed. There is no point bringing back past records or performances. Have a look where Pakistan stands today. No country are going to step foot in Pakistan atleast till the next 5 years. You may address these core issues rather than gloating over 1 or 2 wins and that too in T-20 cricket which anyway is a lottery.

Posted by rasghar786 on (July 7, 2010, 0:57 GMT)

@rajeevsingh, Some Stats for your big headed self: Pakistan Vs India, as of 30th June 2010 Test ODI T20 Matches Played 59 119 2 Matches Pakistan Won 12 64 0 Matches India Won 9 46 2 No Result: 38 4 0

As you can see, Pakistan have a better track record for Pakistan Vs India matches. Only 2 T20's have been played, not enough to comment on. As for the ODI's Pakistan have a better record as well as in Tests. Please next time before speaking, check the stats. It's funny how you have forgotten the Champions Trophy where nearly every Indian was praying for a Pakistani win to stay in the competition. The IPL snub backfired, Pakistan have 3 of the top 10 T20 bowlers and some of the best all rounders. Remind me, who do India have in the T20 section? Your bowling attack is no match for ours, our batting is improving day by day. Your batsmen are getting very old!

Posted by sal80 on (July 6, 2010, 19:06 GMT)

@ rajeevsingh

why are you forgetting the soo many defeats tht indian team has get frm pak team in Sharjah and the most recent was in Champions trophy and evne the most worst for the indian team was tht they were praying for pak win so tht indian team may progress ..and 2ndly IPL is not ICC look what happen when you drop pak players in 2nd IPL we won T20trophy .so think with the open mind rather 1sided mind ..and in asia cup it was close game not a 1 sided affair which indian team win so dnt get over the moon on tht victory

Posted by SettingSun on (July 6, 2010, 17:56 GMT)

@SnowSnake - are you a real person or just a sentient calculator? If you will insist on using statistics to back up every single point you make, did you see the England v Australia ODIs? Did you see Tait's average speeds? Somewhere around 94 mph, if I remember rightly. And that's over 10 overs. He bowled a number of deliveries over 97mph. Now if that isn't fast in your book then you are just wrong. I mean, I know you are completely anti-Australian but you really have got to stop making yourself looking so foolish in trying to make Aussie players look so bad, just because your Yuvraj is such an under-achiever. Put that in your StatsGuru and smoke it.

Posted by   on (July 6, 2010, 17:07 GMT)

@snowsnake. if you're an american citizen living there you should be envious of australia's standard of living. if you go to the 'human development reports' from the united nations website. there you will find global rankings for each country in regards to their standard of living. they use such factors as life expectancy, education and per-capita GDP to determine these rankings. australia leaves the whole world in it's wake except for norway with our quality of life. your nation comes in at thirteenth. i can only speculate your high levels of crime could be responsible for your inferiour ranking. :)

Posted by rajeevsingh on (July 6, 2010, 15:52 GMT)

If Pakistan can throw water bottles on the Australians after winning a match for the first time in 14 matches, then I really pity the Pakistan team and public. Good that our Indian team taught the Pakistanis a lesson in the Asia cup. The Pakistanis win nothing and they come out of their hotels everyday as if they are b…dy champions. Please ask Mr. Shoaib Akhthar how he felt after messing with our star Harbhajan Singh? Also ask Kamran Akmal never to have any sort of tiff with Gautam Gambhir or you will repent. Pakistanis are usually big talk and lots of hot air. They can win 1 or 2 matches against Australia but they have no chance against us Indians. Remember the 20-20 final in 2007. Pakistan who has the most foolish cricket administration ever with full of clowns and no less are their public. Even after being humiliated by India at the IPL auction, Pakistan is supporting India to oppose John Howard. They rightfully deserve the name 'Buffoons' given to them by Malcolm Speed.

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Brydon CoverdaleClose
Brydon Coverdale Assistant Editor Possibly the only person to win a headline-writing award for a title with the word "heifers" in it, Brydon decided agricultural journalism wasn't for him when he took up his position with ESPNcricinfo in Melbourne. His cricketing career peaked with an unbeaten 85 in the seconds for a small team in rural Victoria on a day when they could not scrounge up 11 players and Brydon, tragically, ran out of partners to help him reach his century. He is also a compulsive TV game-show contestant and has appeared on half a dozen shows in Australia.
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