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February 17, 2010
Pakistan A 145 for 3 (Shafiq 48, Hafeez 41, Riaz 2-27) beat Pakistan 143 for 8 (Razzaq 39*, Malik 32, Hafeez 2-21) by seven wickets
After a disastrous Australian tour, Pakistan's confidence will not have been helped as they were overcome by an inexperienced Pakistan A in their warm-up game ahead of the Twenty20 series against England. Abdul Razzaq's rollicking unbeaten 39 boosted Pakistan to 143 for 8 after they were put in to bat, but well-paced innings from Mohammad Hafeez and Asad Shafiq set up a seven-wicket victory, achieved with three balls to spare.
Hafeez, who is captaining Pakistan A, was named Man of the Match for his efforts in this game, which included two wickets for only 21 runs in four overs of tight offspin and a vital 41 in Pakistan A's chase. Hafeez, who has not played international cricket for more than two years, brought himself on early in Pakistan's innings and was soon rewarded with Imran Farhat's wicket.
Imran Nazir fell soon after for a pedestrian three runs from 10 balls, and though Khalid Latif and Umar Akmal consolidated with a 33-run partnership, Pakistan struggled to score quickly in the first half of the innings. Latif and Akmal fell in quick succession, and Fawad Alam and Shahid Afridi struggled to get going in their short innings.
Shoaib Malik provided some impetus with a rapid 32 before he was run out by substitute fielder Abid Ali as Pakistan slipped to 109 for 7 in the 18th over. Razzaq then showed his extensive experience at the end of the innings with a typically aggressive knock, smashing two fours and three sixes to add 34 for the eighth wicket with Yasir Arafat, who was out off the last ball after contributing just three runs to the partnership.
Pakistan A lost Shahzaib Hasan early in their chase, but Hafeez and Shafiq steadied the innings with a 67-run partnership - the highest of the match. Hafeez struck five fours and a six before he was bowled by Arafat, who was impressively economical in his four overs, conceding only 17 runs to go with his wicket.
Shafiq was in sight of a maiden twenty20 half-century, having muscled his way to 48 with six fours and a six, but edged Wahab Riaz to Sarfraz Ahmed with 23 still needed in under three overs. Umair Khan and Naeem Anjum, who both made their twenty20 debuts against England Lions last week, were up to the task, however, hitting three fours and a six between them to seal the win in the final over.
© ESPN EMEA Ltd.
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