T20 World Cup: Azam and Rizwan shine as Pakistan cruise to first win over India

By Sports Desk October 24, 2021

Babar Azam and Mohammed Rizwan both scored half-centuries as Pakistan recorded their first ever T20 World Cup win over India with a 10-wicket triumph.

India had lost just one of their last eight T20I meetings with Pakistan while they had collected five successive T20 World Cup wins – the joint longest streak in the competition.

But Shaheen Afridi (3-31) gave his country early hope as he struck twice to remove both Rohit Sharma for a first-ball duck and KL Rahul (three), with Hasan Ali (2-44) dismissing Suryakumar Yadav (11) to leave India 36-3 at the end of the powerplay.

However, captain Virat Kohli (57) – who has scored the most runs in men's T20I history (3,216) - responded emphatically as he registered his 29th half-century in the format to lift his side to 151-7 at the end of their 20-over allocation.

Kohli's side had lost all eight T20Is in which they posted a first-innings total under 160 since 2018 and that trend looked set to continue as Azam (68 not out) and Rizwan (79 not out) enjoyed a century opening stand inside 13 overs.

The openers motored on as they managed the highest opening partnership ever against India, Azam taking 40 balls to reach his half-century and Rizwan taking one delivery more before the former sealed victory with 13 balls to spare in their first Super 12 Group 2 game.

India's openers struggle

Rohit, who has hit the second-most sixes in the history of the competition (133), offered India experience at the top of the order but his tournament got off to the worst start as he was removed lbw for a golden duck.

His opening partner, Rahul, did not last much longer as the Punjab Kings captain disappointed following warm-up scores of 51 and 39 after his blistering 98 not out in his final IPL 2021 game.

Magical Azam continues remarkable form

In the last three years, no one has scored more T20I runs than Azam's 1,241. Kohli is second on the list, with 1,050.

The Pakistan leader produced a captain's knock to see his side over the line in a famous victory, perfectly kick-starting their World Cup campaign as he smashed six fours and two maximums for his 68.

Related items

  • Archer brings 'fear factor' to England's T20 World Cup squad, says Curran Archer brings 'fear factor' to England's T20 World Cup squad, says Curran

    Jofra Archer's return will bring a "fear factor" to England's bowling attack at the T20 World Cup, believes team-mate Sam Curran.

    Paceman Archer has endured an injury-hit few years, with elbow and back problems preventing him from representing England since March 2023.

    However, he has been included in England's provisional squad for next month's World Cup in the United States and West Indies and could make his international return on Wednesday.

    England face Pakistan in the first of four T20Is at Headingley, and Archer is expected to feature after taking part in team training on Monday.

    It is hoped he might play in three of the four matches against Pakistan in order to build up fitness ahead of the World Cup, and Curran says opposition teams will be nervous about his return.

    "It's incredibly exciting," Curran said on Monday. "I'm sure England fans and players are extremely buzzed to have him back. He's an addition no side can turn down.

    "He's obviously got that extra pace and fear factor we can bring to the opposition as well. Hopefully his injuries are behind him now."

  • Brandon King named captain as West Indies squad named for three-match T20I series against South Africa Brandon King named captain as West Indies squad named for three-match T20I series against South Africa

    Brandon King has been appointed captain of the West Indies squad named to face South Africa in the upcoming three T20 International series at Sabina Park in Kingston starting Thursday, May 23. The squad has been gearing up for this exciting and highly anticipated series with a training camp held at the Coolidge Cricket Ground in Antigua. The selection panel has confirmed that Brandon King will have Roston Chase as his vice captain. Both appointments are on an interim basis.

    King was set to lead the West Indies A-Team on the recently concluded T20 tour to Nepal before he was withdrawn due to injury. Chase, appointed instead, went on to lead the A-Team to a series win against Nepal.

    The West Indies Men’s squad for the series is as follows: Brandon King (Captain), Roston Chase (Vice-Captain), Fabian Allen, Alick Athanaze, Johnson Charles, Andre Fletcher, Matthew Forde, Jason Holder, Akeal Hosein, Shamar Joseph, Kyle Mayers, Obed McCoy, Gudakesh Motie, Romario Shepherd and Hayden Walsh Jr.

    Alzarri Joseph and Sherfane Rutherford will be added to the squad if their respective franchises do not reach the Indian Premier League (IPL) Final. Shai Hope and Nicholas Pooran are both rested for the series and will join the squad in Trinidad on Monday, 27 May.

    “These are among the last competitive T20 International matches before the start of the World Cup,” said lead selector Desmond Haynes. “Players have the opportunity to fine-tune their skills and ensure they are as prepared as they can be for the World Cup, whether they are in the final squad or reserve pool.”

    White Ball Head Coach Daren Sammy also commented on his objectives for this series stating, “We have not played together as a team since the Australia series, but we just completed a very high-intensity training camp in Antigua. Now we have the chance to integrate some of our players returning from the IPL and build some momentum as a group going into the World Cup.”

    Tickets for the T20I Series against South Africa at Sabina Park, Jamaica are available now to buy online from the Windies Tickets service, at WINDIES TICKET PORTAL. Fans who purchase online will benefit from a 20 per cent discount compared to the box office prices, with tickets ranging from the most premium seats with the best-shaded views in the stadium through to affordable standard seats or mounds/grounds entry.

    Match schedule:

    - 23 May 1st T20I West Indies v South Africa at Sabina Park, Jamaica 2:00 pm JT/3:00 pm ECT

    - 25 May 2nd T20I West Indies v South Africa at Sabina Park, Jamaica 2:00 pm JT/3:00 pm ECT

    - 26 May 3rd T20I West Indies v South Africa at Sabina Park, Jamaica 2:00 pm JT/3:00 pm ECT

    West Indies won the last T20 International played at Sabina Park against New Zealand in August 2022, which was the last time international cricket was played at this historic venue.

     

  • Howe taking plenty of positives despite frustrating Newcastle campaign Howe taking plenty of positives despite frustrating Newcastle campaign

    Eddie Howe was keen to look at the positives after Newcastle United secured seventh place in the Premier League on Sunday.

    Alexander Isak and Bruno Guimaraes were among the goalscorers as Newcastle won 4-2 at Brentford to finish their Premier League campaign.

    The victory ensured a seventh-place finish, and a Manchester City victory over Manchester United in next Saturday's FA Cup final will confirm Newcastle's place in next season's Europa Conference League.

    While this season did not quite live up to the heroics of last term, which saw the Magpies finish in the Champions League spots, Howe still feels it has been a successful campaign.

    "It summed up our season," Howe told BBC Sport. "We weren't totally secure at the back, but great credit to the players. They've done their job - now we wait and see.

    "We anticipated after losing against Manchester United that our control of the [European] situation had gone. It's never a nice situation, but whatever happens, happens.

    "We have issues to solve defensively. If we can do that, next season could be another season of really strong performances. This was a season that could have been better, but a good season overall.

    "We're a really united club. I think we're still moving forward, so there's a lot to be positive about."

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.