Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Shadab Khan left the West Indies in a spin once again as his four-wicket haul led to Pakistan winning the second Twenty20 International in Trinidad by three runs.
After recording the most economical figures by a debutant in Twenty20 International history, Shadab continued his superb performance with the ball as he finished with career-best figures.
Choosing to bowl first, the West Indies only had to wait until the fifth ball of the match to get their first wicket as Kamran Akmal was clean bowled by Samuel Badree for a duck.
Babar Azam and Ahmed Shehzad made up for the early loss of Akmal with a 41-run partnership before Pakistan began to collapse.
Azam managed to make 27 before being caught behind off the bowling of captain Carlos Brathwaite.
Shoaib Malik and Wahab Riaz were the other two players to have an impact with the bat as they scored 28 and 24 respectively to lead Pakistan to 132 before they were bowled out.
Brathwaite and Sunil Narine picked up three wickets apiece, while Badree snapped up two and Kesrick Williams chipped in with one.
Chasing 133 to win, West Indies opener Evin Lewis was run out by Imad Wasim for just three runs, but Chadwick Walton and Marlon Samuels steadied the innings with a 50-run partnership.
Walton ended up making 21 before being cleaned up by Shadab. Hasan Ali then joined the party by removing Lendl Simmons for one run before Shadab returned to take out Kieron Pollard and Rovman Powell in successive deliveries.
In his next over, Shadab had Samuels caught behind for 44, which came off 35 balls and included five boundaries and two sixes.
Despite Jason Holder scoring a valiant 26 not out towards the end of the innings, it wasn’t enough as the West Indies fell agonisingly short of their target.
Shadab was the most successful bowler with four wickets, while Hasan and Wahab claimed one wicket each.
Brathwaite was gutted to have lost, and said: “We started beautifully, we let it slip. We dropped a catch, and we misfielded, didn’t do it in the backend with the bat. We have a team plan, but it’s up to the guys to express what they want. We are showing progression: we had the opportunity but couldn’t win. It’s about self-reflection.”
Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed was relieved to have won the match, and said: “Starting wasn’t good, but we finished well. It looked a good pitch, but it’s slow.”
Shadab was named Man of the Match, and said: “A slower pitch than Barbados, was getting more turn.”