Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed described his side’s vital three-wicket victory against Bangladesh at the World Cup as a “great win”. Sarfaraz’s side went into the game at Headingley knowing a win would take them above hosts England into the fourth and final semi-final qualification place.
And it appeared to be plain-sailing against an Afghan side without a win so far in the tournament, as Shaheen Afridi’s 4-47 and two wickets apiece from Imad Wasim and Wahab Riaz restricted them to 227-9 from their 50 overs. Chasing 228 for the win, Pakistan were left reeling on 81-3 and 156-6 in their reply, with Afghanistan sensing a surprise win as their opponents needed 48 runs from 36 balls at one point.
But a disastrous 46th over from Afghan captain Gulbadin Naib, which Imad hit 18 runs from, swung the pendulum back in favour of Pakistan. Gulbadin made amends when he ran out Shadab Khan for 11, but an unbeaten 49 from man-of-the match Imad, with Wahab hit the winning runs saw Pakistan finish on 230-7 with two balls remaining.
Pakistan must now beat Bangladesh in their final game on Friday and hope England fail to win against India on Sunday and New Zealand on Wednesday to see them into the semi-finals. Sarfaraz said: “It is a great win for us on not an easy pitch.
“We know it was not an easy target. Their bowlers used the conditions very well. Everyone chipped in, it was good team work. “We all know that it is not easy to win our last four games, we go match by match. We will all be watching India v England tomorrow.”Copyright © 2020 Completesports.com All rights reserved. The information contained in Completesports.com may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the prior written authority of Completesports.com.