Zimbabwe v Pakistan, 2nd T20I, Harare September 18, 2011

Hafeez sets up another Pakistan win


Pakistan 141 for 7 (Hafeez 51, Jarvis 3-14) v Zimbabwe 136 for 7 (Taibu 37*, Hafeez 3-11) by 5 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Pakistan completed a clean sweep of Zimbabwe in all three formats of the game, with a victory in the second Twenty20 in an exciting, last-ball finish in Harare. Zimbabwe's chase - thanks to controlled bowling from Pakistan - did not have any momentum until the final over, when Tatenda Taibu attacked.

With 20 runs required off six balls, Taibu smacked the first delivery for a six over long-on to set the tone for a fighting finish. His feisty running ensured two runs off each of the next four deliveries and left him with six to get off the last ball. Sohail Khan held his nerve and bowled a low, full toss wide outside off stump. Taibu had backed away to the leg side and was not even able to play a shot. It brought an anti-climatic end to a chase that Zimbabwe allowed to get too big for them, when it should not have.

Vusi Sibanda and Chamu Chibhabha began with the right intent, Sibanda opening the innings with a gorgeously straight drive for four. They scored a boundary off each of the first four overs but did not rotate the strike enough, and the required run-rate rose. Chibhabha tried to break the shackles when Saeed Ajmal came on, looking to loft over long on, but was caught by a backpedalling Yasir Shah outside the circle.

Ajmal's opening wicket maiden put the brakes on Zimbabwe's chase and they stayed on until the final over. Sibanda frustration grew and he was dismissed by a good Hafeez catch at point while attempting a big hit. Hafeez's Midas touch with both bat and ball was evident and he bowled Cephas Zhuwao with a straight delivery. He also claimed the wickets of Hamilton Maskadza, who gifted him a catch in his follow through, and Brendan Taylor, who was caught by Misbah-ul-Haq at midwicket.

With Zimbabwe's chase unravelling, big-hitting Charles Coventry flung his bat at the first three Junaid Khan deliveries he faced. Two of them went for four and the third he bottom-edged onto his stumps. Elton Chigumbura was able to play a few forceful shots, driving down the ground and pulling with relative ease, but was bogged down by bowling that was too good for him to smash out of the ground.

Pakistan's bowlers did not panic, even when it went down to the last over. Taibu had to marshal both Prosper Utseya and himself but in the end, Sohail had the final say.

Zimbabwe, however, had put on an improved display in the field, bowled better lengths and took all the catches they were offered to keep Pakistan to under 150. Taylor was innovative with his bowling changes and, after opening with a spinner, introduced Chibhabha in the third over. Chibhabha struck when Asad Shafiq tried to launch a length ball for six but was caught by Chigumbura at long-on.

Two balls later, Rameez Raja was caught at short fine leg. Kyle Jarvis, who bowled better lengths than he did in the previous couple of matches, banged in a short ball and Raja, late on the pull, and gifted Ray Price a simple catch. The hosts inflicted a third early wound on Pakistan when Shoaib Malik was caught behind off Chigumbura, after slashing at wide delivery.

Hafeez rode the tide and played another important innings, targeting the spinners in particular. While Hafeez was at the crease, Umar Akmal could afford to be watchful, especially against Chigumbura, who bowled a controlled spell dotted with slower balls. Price eventually got Hafeez, who lofted towards long-on but just did not have enough on it to clear the boundary.

Hafeez's departure resulted in the runs, and more importantly, the boundaries drying up and Pakistan only scored 36 runs in the last five overs. Akmal was run out returning for a second, caught well short of his crease by a Chigumbura throw, and big-hitting Tanvir was bowled by Jarvis. Jarvis was solid at the death and made good use of yorkers, a delivery he is close to perfecting.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Mohsin on September 20, 2011, 15:11 GMT

    Pakistan are now getting better and better, Thankfully!

  • Dummy4 on September 20, 2011, 7:34 GMT

    @Criclover112, i agree Pakistan itself is struggling to find genuine pace after departure of Mohd Amer (hopefully Wahab Riaz may add a yard or two to his 145 odd kms) but how come India fails to produce a genuine fast bowler ever? Though there's much hype about some varun Aaron in india these days.

  • bob on September 19, 2011, 22:36 GMT

    And why would anyone be jealous of a team that got thrashed 4-0, 1-0 and 3-0. What glitz and glamor is in a team that cant even produce a single fast bowler, Cricket too me is exciting whwn you see a great fast bowler running in and bowling, Indian cricket doesnt have that so it never impresses me. Riggght now Pak cricket is also lacking that and that is the reason I am not following them very closely.

  • bob on September 19, 2011, 22:31 GMT

    @hira02 Ayaz said that they havent won a game in quite sometime, a 2 month long tour without any win is quite some time, no body said anything about a decade. As for the excuses you have given for India's winless tour, none of them are valid. You are talking about injuries, but from what i saw , India went in the last two test matches with their complete batting line up and still got hammered. harbajan singh before being injured was getting smacked around by the English batsmen especially peterson, so he was not really helpful even when he was present and he also didnt take that many wickets the caribbean. As for the rain, the matches were shortened and I did not see a single match where it was in England's favor. And I dont even know what dodgy decisions you are talking about, have you forgotten the second innings of the first test match, where tendulkar and co were plumb out and the umpires didnt give them out, but England still won, so stop making excuses.

  • Hira on September 19, 2011, 20:09 GMT

    @Ayaz Noor M ..your're making it out like india havent won an international game in a decade..we've beaten west indies 1-0 in tht series and that too with our key players rested. the eng tour was cursed we had too many injuries, lacked preparation and exhausted and the dodgy DRS worked too many times in favour of eng. In the ODI it got worse with eng eventually playing india A and won 3-0 with the help from weather. we're certainly not jealous of pakistan beating ZIMBABWE or anyone for that matter..i think what you and fellow india bashers are jealous of is indian crickets glitz and glamour and financial might!

  • Dummy4 on September 19, 2011, 16:08 GMT

    @hira02, isn't the word 'won' making you feel jealous? After all you have not seen your team win any international fixture for a quite sometime. From 2nd test against WI till 5th odi against England, India hasnt won any international match! Too bad, but dont feel jealous, your time will come too, in your own backyard!

  • romeo on September 19, 2011, 13:22 GMT

    zimbabwe has shown immense improvement in all three formats of the game thumbs up to them they are in the right track. Whats needed now is they work on their tactics as they lose games they should have won due to lack of intelligent tactis. Pakistan was given a run for their money and held their breath in fear of losing in most games. i say come New Zealand we will justify our coming back into the test arena. Go BOys GO

  • Emjay on September 19, 2011, 12:55 GMT

    My Pakistan team: ODI: Hafeez, Imran Nazir, Asad Shafiq, Rameez Raja, Younis Khan, Misbah, Umar Akmal(WK),Shahid Afridi, Saeed Ajmal, Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz

    20/20: Hafeez, Shahzaib Hasan, Asad Shafiq, Rameez Raja, Ahmad Shahzad, Umar Akmal(WK), Misbah, Afridi, Saeed Ajmal, Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz

    TESTS: Hafeez, Taufeeq, Azhar Ali, Younis Khan, Asad Shafiq, Misbah, Mohammad Salman (WK), Hammad Azam, Aizaz Cheema, Saeed Ajmal, Sohail Khan.

    This is a brilliant combination and they will be competitive no doubt about it.

  • Dummy4 on September 19, 2011, 12:38 GMT

    @Hira02, one can easily see the frustration you may be experiencing by seeing Pakistani wins making the headlines consistently alongside indian whitewashes at the hands of English...but hey don't you worry as India will soon win some trophy by rigging hawk eye etc like they did in world cup semi final against Pakistan.

  • Dummy4 on September 19, 2011, 12:24 GMT

    @Gupta.Ankur, there were many odi games?? I hope you're not talking about eng ind series. For your info there were only 3 odis in this series, 1st Pak won by 5 runs (yup its a small margin) 2nd Pak completely outbeat them by thrashing them by 10 wickets, 3rd won by good 25 runs. While in 1st t20 Pak made 198 and won by great margin of 85 runs and yes last t20 won by only 5 runs

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