Umar Akmal smashed 94 off 54 deliveries as Pakistan piled up 191-5 after being sent in to bat by Australia in the World Twenty20 Group Two Super 10 match in Dhaka yesterday, and four Pakistan bowlers took two wickets apiece to shepherd Australia to a 16 run loss.
Elder brother Kamran Akmal contributed a run-a-ball 31 and Shahid Afridi returned unbeaten on 20 off 11 deliveries.
The Akmal brothers put on 96 for the third wicket after Pakistan were reduced to 25-2 by the fifth over, losing the key wickets of Ahmed Shehzad and skipper Mohammad Hafeez.
Umar Akmal hit four sixes and nine boundaries before he fell in the final over, caught on the fence attempting another big hit off Mitchell Starc.
Pakistan added 29 runs in the final three overs to leave Australia facing a stiff target of 9.6 runs an over at the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium.
Australia’s 43-year-old spinner Brad Hogg, the oldest player ever in World Twenty20 competitions, had a forgettable outing in his team’s first match.
Hogg dropped Umar Akmal on the midwicket fence when the batsman was on 22 and then conceded 29 runs in three wicketless overs after being called on to bowl in the ninth over.
Part-time spinner Aaron Finch was hit for 18 runs in his first over, the 12th of the innings, as Umar Akmal reached his half-century with his third six.
Kamran Akmal, who was also dropped early in the innings, was finally dismissed in the 13th over when David Warner held a running catch on the point fence off the bowling of Nathan Coulter-Nile (2-36).
Australia were all out for 175 off the final delivery of the match. Glenn Maxwell (74) and Aaron Finch (65) guided them to 126-3 and seemingly in control, but Zulfiqar Babar (2-26), Umar Gul (2-29), Bilawal Bhatti (2-36) and Afridi (2-30) took regular wickets to ensure no further partnerships.
ENGLAND VERSUS NZ
Captain Brendon McCullum played one of the most important six-ball knocks of his career to lead New Zealand to a nine-run win over England via the Duckworth-Lewis method in a rain-marred World Twenty20 match on Saturday.
Chasing 173 for victory in Bangladesh, McCullum hit two sixes off rival skipper Stuart Broad in the fifth over before the heavens opened and his team were left on 52 for one after 5.2 overs.
No further cricket was possible because of the rain and because Duckworth-Lewis only comes into play in Twenty20 when five overs are bowled by each team, New Zealand’s innings proved vital.