Pakistan and Australia in UAE, 5 ODI Series, 2019
Venue: Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium, Sharjah
Date & Time: 22 March 2019
RR: 5.73 | Australia beat Pakistan by 8 wickets
That's all from this match. Sharjah will host the second ODI as well. The match is on 24th March at 1500 local (1100 GMT). Do join us for all the action. Cheers!
Australia's skipper and the Man of the Match, Aaron Finch says that it was a daunting total but he feels the pitch played pretty well in the second innings. Praises Shaun Marsh for partnering him well and taking the pressure off him. Wants his side to do the process right and reckons that there is still room for improvement. Further mentions that they have taken all the criticism positively and have worked on their game.
Pakistan's skipper, Shoaib Malik says that the early strike was missing from them. Feels that 280 was a good score but he reckons that the way Finch and Marsh batted, they controlled the innings well and took it deep for the other batsmen to take over. Adds that he is disappointed but thinks they can improve. On Haris Sohail, Malik says that coming from an injury break and playing so well, it shows he has got the right kind of temperament and it's a great sign for Pakistan.
Pakistan's bowling was pretty ordinary. Right from the beginning, they failed to create any pressure. Their spinners were supposed to pose a big threat to the Aussie batsmen on this surface but that never happened. Imad Wasim and Yasir Shah didn't turn up with the ball as they were countered superbly by Finch and Marsh. Nothing much to write about their pacers. Mohammad Abbas bowled decently in his debut match but never looked threatening. To add to that, their fielding was also sloppy. Earlier in their batting innings, they fared nicely but lacked the desired push in the end overs. The kind of power-hitting that's required in today's cricket was certainly lacking and they have to work on this aspect as well.
Chasing a target of 281 on this tricky surface was never easy. But the way their openers batted and then the experienced heads of Aaron Finch and Shaun Marsh, they never looked under any kind of pressure. The Aussie skipper seems to be finding his form at the right time as he stroked a fine century. Shaun also looked very impressive in his unbeaten knock of 91 and stayed there till the end to see the Aussies home along with Peter Handscomb.
Pakistan are beaten comprehensively. Australia have pulled out the second best run chase in Sharjah. The twin series win in India have given the defending champion a big boost. Their batting has improved by leaps and bounds. Putting in a neat chase is developing into a good habit for them. With four wins in a row now, they are peaking at the right time before the mega event.
Mohammad Amir to bowl the penultimate over which very well could be the last one.
Fine leg and third man up. The line has to be very straight from Faheem Ashraf.
Faheem Ashraf is back into the attack.
Peter Handscomb is the new batsman.
Mohammad Abbas is back for another spell.
Powerplay 3 signalled by the umpire. 5 fielders can now be placed outside the 30-yard circle till the end of the match. Also Mohammad Amir is back into the attack.
Shoaib Malik introduces himself into the attack. Can the skipper get the breakthrough?
Yasir Shah back into the attack.
Drinks Break - Australia well on top here. They have lost just a single wicket and require another 102 runs off 96 balls. These two have not taken many risks but still, have managed to squeeze in singles and hit odd boundaries at regular intervals. Needless to say, only wickets can see Pakistan win this one and they need to get them soon now.
Mohammad Amir replaces Yasir Shah.
Imad Wasim is back into the attack. Pakistan need to pick at least a wicket here.
Mohammad Abbas is back into the attack.
Mohammad Amir back into the attack.
Here comes the leggie - Yasir Shah!
Drinks break. Steady going from Australia, in spite of losing Usman Khawaja. Aaron Finch is finding this pitch to his liking and has stroked a well-crafted 44 so far. In Shaun Marsh, he has a partner known to bat well on slow pitches and together they are amidst a 25-run stand at the moment. 193 more needed off 198 balls and Pakistan need to pick a few quick wickets to make things interesting. Let's see how the next half pans out where Yasir Shah is expected to bowl.
The new batsman in is Shaun Marsh.
Faheem Ashraf to bowl.
Powerplay 2 signalled by the umpire. Now 4 fielders can be placed outside the inner circle till the 40th over.
Change in bowling. Spinner introduced into the attack. Imad Wasim replaces Mohammad Amir.
Debutant Mohammad Abbas to bowl his first over in ODI cricket with the second new ball.
We are back for the chase. Out walk the Australian opening pair of Aaron Finch and Usman Khawaja. The latter will take the strike. Mohammad Amir will start the proceedings with the first new ball.