Australia Cruise To Pakistan Series Win

Australia took advantage of Pakistan’s fragilities to record a comfortable 5 wicket in the second One Day International on Friday at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series.  Pakistan suffered a batting collapse of epic proportions after winning the toss and batting.  From a position of strength of 126/0 after 25 overs, the Pakistanis crumbled to 215 all out in 49.3 overs.

Ahmed Shehzad and Sarfraz Ahmed put on 126 for the opening wicket before the pack of cards came tumbling down.  Shehzad was first to go when he was caught by Steven Smith off Xavier Doherty (1/44) for 61.  Four runs later Ahmed joined his opening partner in the change room caught by Glenn Maxwell off Mitchell Johnson for 65 off 72 balls including five fours and a six.

Asad Shafiq and Misbah-ul-Haq set about rebuilding but the captain would be run out for a pedestrian 15 from 29 deliveries.  It was 168/4 when Umar Akmal was caught by Smith off Johnson for just 5.  Shafiq was next to go for 29 when Johnson caught him off Nathan Lyon (1/40).

Shahid Afridi scored just 2 before he was caught by Smith off Johnson (3/40) and it was 199/6.  Wahab Riaz also scored just 2 before he was clean bowled by Kane Richardson (1/43).  One run later Raza Hasan was run out for a duck and Pakistan were reeling.  Zulfiqar Babar was caught by Maxwell off James Faulkner (1/27) for just 6 before Mohammad Irfan was the third run out victim of the innings without scoring.

Pakistan were all out for 215 with three balls to spare.  Aaron Finch was out early to give Pakistan hope after he caught behind off Irfan for 14 and it was 22/1.  Babar then had Smith caught by the keeper for 12 and at 39/2 it certainly looked like anyone’s cricket match.

David Warner and George Bailey steered the tourists to 72 before the Warner was caught by Irfan off Hasan for 29.  Bailey and Glenn Maxwell stabilised matters and took the Australians to 157 before Bailey was run out for 28.  It was 178/5 when Maxwell was caught by Shafiq off Babar for the top score of 76 which included nine fours and a six from 81 deliveries.

Faulkner (26*) and Brad Haddin (17*) saw the Aussies over the finish line as they reached 217/5 after 43.2 overs to record a comfortable victory to clinch the series.