Pakistan pulled off a vital three-wicket win against Afghanistan in Leeds to keep their semi-final hopes alive.
It was survival versus pride in Leeds. Pakistan was fighting for a semi-final spot against Afghanistan, who have already been knocked out of the tournament.
Afghanistan batted first and squeezed out 227-9 in their 50 overs, their batsmen getting off to good starts but not able to convert their scores.
Two scores stood out – a 35-ball 42 from Asghar Afghan and 42 off 54 balls from Najibullah Zadran.
For Pakistan, 19-year-old Shaheen Shah Afridi stood out once again finishing with 4-47 and was responsible for Afghanistan’s initial collapse which reduced them to 2-27 after 4.5 overs.
Afghanistan struggled to string together partnerships, and they crawled to their sub-par total.
Pakistan’s chase started off pleasingly, despite Fakhar Zaman being dismissed for a two-ball duck.
Imam-ul-Haq and Babar Azam strung together 72 runs before Imam was bamboozled by Mohammad Nabi and stumped for 36.
Nabi struck again in his following over, removing Babar for 45 and throttling Pakistan to 81-3.
Mujeeb Ur Rahman picked up Mohammad Hafeez (19) for his second wicket and reduced Pakistan to 124-4.
Haris Sohail was joined by his captain Sarfaraz Ahmed.
But Pakistan was hit by two run-outs that set them back even further as nerves around the stadium started to set in.
The game went to the wire with Pakistan needing six runs off six balls.
Imad Wasim (49 not out) and Wahab Riaz (15 off nine balls) were the heroes for their side, as Pakistan scored 230-7 to clinch the victory with two balls to spare.
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