Mohammad Rizwan smashed his second successive half century and Mohammad Nawaz made an impactful 42 to set up Pakistan’s five-wicket victory over archrival India with one ball left in their Asia Cup Super 4 match on Sunday.
Rizwan scored 71 runs off 51 deliveries while Nawaz hit six fours and two sixes in his 20-ball innings to dominate the middle overs as Pakistan reached 182-5 in reply to India’s 181-7.
Iftikhar Ahmed finished off the game with two off the penultimate delivery in Pakistan’s highest run-chase against India in a T20.
Earlier, Virat Kohli’s brilliant 60 off 44 followed a 54-run opening stand between Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul, who both made quickfire 28s after India lost the toss.
But Pakistan didn’t allow India’s power-hitters to score freely in the second half of the innings, thanks to Shadab Khan (2-31) and the left-arm spin of Nawaz, who grabbed 1-25 off his tidy four overs.
Rizwan and Nawaz switched gears once captain Babar Azam again fell within the batting powerplay for 14 and Fakhar Zaman holed out in the deep for 15 after laboring for 18 deliveries.
The right-and-left combination of Rizwan and Nawaz smashed 73 runs off 41 balls before India removed both batters in the death overs.
In the 18th over, Arshdeep Singh dropped a sitter at point to give Asif Ali a reprieve against the bowling of legspinner Ravi Bishnoi. Asif, who had not scored any runs at that stage, went on to hit an eight-ball 16 before Arshdeep claimed his wicket in the last over but it proved too late.
It was India’s first loss in the tournament as Pakistan avenged its five-wicket defeat against its subcontinent neighbor in the opening match last Sunday.
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