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Pakistan pulverise woeful West Indies, clinch T20I series – Sport

A 119-run second-wicket stand between Babar Azam (97*) and Hussain Talat (63) helped Pakistan set a record 206-run target for the out-of-sorts West Indies, who mustered up just 123 runs and lost the second T20I at National Stadium Karachi by 82 runs.

With that defeat, Pakistan took an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series, rendering Tuesday’s final match a dead rubber.

The Men in Green, who won the toss and opted to bat first, did not get a major contribution from their hard-hitting opener Fakhar Zaman, who chipped in with just half a dozen runs and departed in the second over.

Babar Azam and Hussain Talat, however, repaired that early damage, taking their team to 42-1 at the end of 5 overs.

The duo were all warmed up and in form from the recent Pakistan Super League 2018 and they had little difficulty dealing with whatever the inexperienced Calypsos threw at them.

Halfway through their innings, Pakistan were 90-1, with a second straight 200-run output not beyond their reach.

Azam, who had a billion 50s to his name in PSL 2018, added another to his burgeoning T20I record in the 11th over.

What he could do his partner could just as well; Talat brought up his maiden 50 in the 12th over.

Talat’s marvelous 41-ball 63-run innings ended when debutant Odean Smith had him caught at point. And what a stunning catch it was by West Indies captain Jason Mohammad.

One Islamabad United batter replaced another as Asif Ali — another PSL 2018 standout — walked in.

With just 5 overs left, Pakistan were 144-2 and needed some late fireworks from the very capable Asif if they were to cross the 200-run mark again.

He did hit one out of the park in the same manner he had in the PSL 2018 final.

Azam had hit many 4s in his knock but was still lacking a six. Perhaps, it was Asif’s influence that rubbed off Azam, who finally hit one sailing above and beyond the boundary.

Asif’s 14-run cameo came to and end as he holed out at deep midwicket.

In the end, Pakistan finished with 205-3 — their highest score in T20Is. Azam though missed several chances in the final over to bring up his maiden T20 ton, eventually finishing with an unbeaten 97 off 58 balls.

With such a massive target to chase, the visitors needed a strong start from their openers: Andre Fletcher and Chadwick Walton — both of who played in PSL 2018 and shouldn’t have been as rusty or inexperience as most of their teammates.

But like the first game, they did not get a lunching pad from their first two batters; Fletcher departed in the third over as Mohammad Nawaz claimed his wicket.

The experienced Marlon Samuels walked in.

The West Indian plan, at this stage, was to simply avoid another collapse a la the opening game, which is why they were playing with extra caution. And that caution reflected on the scoreboard.

By the end of 5 overs, they were 25-1 and clearly resigned to losing with their pride intact rather than go down fighting.

Walton went after Shadab in the 7th over, hitting a 6 and a 5, which is why Shadab celebrated with such passion when he bowled out the West Indian batter in the 9th; Walton contributed 40.

Halfway through their innings, West Indies were 57-2 and set for another ugly defeat, if not a record defeat like the first game.

Samuels holed out on the first ball of the 11th as things went further down south for the West Indies.

Captain Mohammad and Denesh Ramdin hit a few boundaries that weren’t going to get them anywhere near the target but at least salvage their pride.

Ramdin departed on the final ball of the 15 as the Calypso kings needed 114 runs for the final 30 balls — a task virtually impossible for a side that has only 12 fit players in their traveling squad.

The half-hearted, one-handed hoick summed up the West Indian body language.

There’s no point flogging a dead horse and there’s no point telling the rest of the match’s tale; it was plain ugly. The Windies were all out for just 123 runs in the 20th over.

Line-ups

Pakistan: Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, Hussain Talat, Sarfraz Ahmed (capt, wk), Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Nawaz, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali

West Indies: Chadwick Walton, Andre Fletcher, Marlon Samuels, Jason Mohammed (capt), Denesh Ramdin (wk), Rovman Powell, Keemo Paul, Rayad Emrit, Kesrick Williams, Samuel Badree, Odean Smith

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