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The first Austral-Asia Cup tournament, played in Sharjah in April as part of the Cricketers' Benefit Fund Series, was won by Pakistan off the last ball of the final against India. With 4 runs needed to win, Javed Miandad struck Chetan Sharma's final delivery for his third 6.
India, put in to bat, were given an excellent start by Gavaskar, Srikkanth and Vengsarkar, who put on 200 for the loss of only one wicket. However, they slumped from 216 for two to 245 for seven when Imran Khan and Wasim Akram returned to the attack. Pakistan's requirement of just under 5 an over drifted to 9 with ten overs remaining, but Miandad and Abdul Qadir picked up the rate in their fifth-wicket stand of 71 and Miandad kept the impetus going with exciting running between the wickets. His 110, as he faced the final ball from Chetan Sharma, contained only two 6s and two 4s, but with India's field set to prevent a third 4, he won the match in the most dramatic manner. It was Pakistan's first major success in a limited-overs tournament and they won $40,000 in prizemoney.
Five countries participated in the tournament: Australia, New Zealand and Sri Lanka, in addition to India and Pakistan. Sri Lanka, as winners of the Asia Cup, qualified automatically for the semi-finals, where they were joined by the winners of the first-round matches, India and Pakistan, plus New Zealand, who went through as the first-round loser with the lesser margin of defeat. Following a practice established in previous competitions in Sharjah, neutral umpires were employed, D. M. Archer and A. Gaynor, from West Indies, standing in all five matches.
The beneficiaries of the tournament were Vijay Hazare, Javed Miandad, Dilip Vengsarkar and Wazir Mohammad.
Match reports for