2019 World Cup 36th Match: Imad stars as Pakistan beat Afghanistan in thrilling showdown

Imad Wasim two wickets 49 not out Pakistan Afghanistan World Cup 36th Match Headingley cricket

Imad Wasim was named Man of the Match for excelling with both the bat and ball

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Pakistan spin-bowling all-rounder Imad Wasim took two wickets and struck a game-winning 49 not out to lead his side to a three-wicket win over Afghanistan.

Imad’s heroics ensured Pakistan kept their hopes of qualifying for the World Cup semi-finals alive.

Choosing to bat first, Afghanistan lost captain Gulbadin Naib early on as he was caught behind off the bowling of Shaheen Shah Afridi for 15 runs.

Afridi struck again the very next ball as Hashmatullah Shahidi was caught by Imad at mid-off for a golden duck.

Rahmat Shah managed to score 35 runs before he was caught by Babar Azam at short cover off the bowling of Imad.

Asghar Afghan and Ikram Alikhil steadied things with a 64-run partnership before Asghar was clean bowled by Shadab Khan for 42.

Ikram went on to make 24 before he was dismissed by Imad, while Mohammad Nabi was sent packing by Wahab Riaz after scoring 16 runs.

Najibullah Zadran mustered 42 runs before he was cleaned up by Afridi, who also took out Rashid Khan.

With Hamid Hassan falling to Wahab, Afghanistan finished on 227/9.

Afridi was the pick of the bowlers with four wickets, while Imad and Wahab snapped up two wickets apiece. As for Shadab, he chipped in with one.

Afridi, who is 19, made history during the match as he broke the record for the best figures of a teenager in a World Cup match.

Chasing 228 to win, Pakistan were dealt a big blow on the second ball of their innings as opener Fakhar Zaman was trapped lbw off the bowling of Mujeeb Ur Rahman for a duck.

Imam-ul-Haq and Azam made up for the loss of Zaman with a 72-run partnership before Imam was stumped by Ikram off the bowling of Nabi for 36.

Azam went on to score 45 before he was clean bowled by Nabi.

Hafeez was then dismissed by Mujeeb for 19, while Haris Sohail was given out lbw off the bowling of Rashid for 27.

Things went from bad to worse as Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed was run out for 18 runs.

Imad took over from that point as he dominated the 50-run stand he put together with Shadab.

Even though Shadab was run out for 11 runs, Imad and Wahab mopped up the remaining runs to lead Pakistan to a nail-biting win with two balls to spare.

Imad finished on 49, which came off 54 balls and included five boundaries, while Wahab remained undefeated on 15, which came off nine deliveries and included a boundary and a six.

Mujeeb and Nabi took two wickets apiece, while Rashid claimed one.

Imad was named Man of the Match.

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