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Pakistan Team Best T20 Cricket Matches

Posted by on Tuesday, December 20, 2011, 9:47
This news item was posted in Sports category and has 3 Comments so far .

It came, it flourished and it conquered. With all the criticism and skepticism, T-20 is here to stay. Pakistan immediately fell in love with this blistering format but never forgot to carry their “unpredictable” tag along with them.

Pakistan Team
Pakistan Team

Not many would be aware that the T-20 match Pakistan played against Bangladesh on 29th November at the Sher-e-Bangla stadium was their 50th outing – most by any international outfit – in this shortened layout. It has been a topsy turvy love affair between the Green Shirts and their fans, as the Green Shirts have gifted them both delights and heartbreaks. Here is a look at some of Pakistan’s exceptional games that remain stuck in one’s memory for one reason or another.

India Vs Pakistan Kingsmead Durban

21 years after Miandad hit Chetan Sharma out on Sharjah highway, Pakistan and India played a thrilling tie at the inaugural T-20 World cup. The McGrath like Asif skittled the Indian batting giants with his classic mastery of the seam, reducing them to 36 for 4. In stepped Robin Uthappa shouldering the innings with a diligently crafted 50 but still India were restricted to 141.

Pakistan’s story was no different when it came to their batting. Seemingly shaky at 47 for 4, once Afridi departed, they were in a hopeless situation needing 39 from 15 balls. This was however the time for a new star to be noticed. Misbah-ul-Haq emerged as the unlikely hero holding the fort when all was crumbling. A six and a four off Harbhajan Singh in the 18th over left the Indian crowds silent and gave Pakistan a fragile hope of winning. The last over required 13, Misbah did everything right till the last ball where Yuvraj refused to let him bat his crease.

It was a tie and the result would come through a bowl-out. India prevailed with Sehwag, Harbhajan and Uthappa hitting the stumps with deadly accuracy while Yasir Arafat, Gul and Afridi forgot their target. As Captains, it was Shoaib Malik’s first heart-break and Dhoni’s first international win.

India Vs Pakistan 2007 World Cup final

Just 10 days after the delirious scenes at Kingsmead, the Sub-continent giants locked arms in perhaps the best fought final in cricket history. India batted first and thanks to an inspirational 75 from Gautam Gambhir, managed a merely defendable 157. Malik’s men were merciless in the field with Gul denting the Indians thrice.

With one hand on the cup, Pakistan fans relished themselves champions when Imran Nazir smacked two sixes and two fours from Sreesanth’s opening over. But wickets kept tumbling and at 77 for 6, Pakistan appeared out of contention needing a massive 54 from 24 balls. Misbah was still there and so were the hopes and when he smashed Harbhajan for three sixes in the 17th over, the improbable seemed possible.

Once again Pakistan needed 13 off the last over and ice-cool Misbah was on strike. After lofting Joginder Sharma for six on long-off, Misbah did the unthinkable, moving across the stumps and handing Sreesanth at fine leg his most important catch ever. Indian fans went ecstatic while Pakistanis lost their pulse. Indian media slammed Misbah with the undesirable tag, “Mr. Almost”.

Pakistan vs South Africa 2009 World Cup Semi-Final

Trend Bridge turned out to be for Afridi what Eden Park served for Inzimam in the 92 World Cup. Pakistan had disastrous outings in both tournaments and barely made it to the last four, and once there they needed individual heroics to sail ashore. The unbeaten proteas were the favorites for the match and did everything to stand by their clinical approach; little did they know that heavens were finally ready to give Afridi his overdue recognition.

Moved up in the order, Afridi made a clinical 51 off 34 balls. Even defying his own swashbuckling approach, and yes the famous flying kiss that left Kallis fuming his nostrils. South Africa fought hard to restrict Pakistan to 149.

Kallis (64) gave the proteas a solid start and threatened to take the match away. Afridi once again blocked their way with his wrist magic shaking the stumps twice sending Gibbs and De Villiers packing, it was time to think about the final once again.

Pakistan vs Sri-Lanka 2009 World Cup Final

21st June 2009 was a time that was critical for both the team and the nation. A young team needed a win to establish its credentials while a nation needed it to come together. It happened for both. On the other side was Sangakara who had to fight 11 spirited souls, with Afridi once again waiting to be the knight in shining armor. The Islanders never actually stood up in the match. The moment Aamir removed Dilshan in the opening over; bugles were already blowing in streets back home.

Restricted to 138, Sri-Lanka needed heaps of luck to stop the Pakistani juggernaut. Shahzaib and Kamran gave Pakistan the ideal start and Afridi with years of experience on his shoulders made sure he took the trophy home with a career best 54. The moment the winning run arrived, Afridi raised arms high in his trade mark style and a crowd of mostly Pakistani fans erupted fanatically, showing how much this victory meant to them, Lords had a new Lord.

Pakistan Vs Australia 2010 World Cup Semi-Final

This was a match that was supposed to be fought between two great teams, but in the final overs, it turned out to be about between two great players, the one with stronger nerves came out victorious. Pakistan started brilliantly with two dazzling 50’s from the Akmal brothers, Umar in particular showed the range of his talent by smacking Mitchell Johnson for three sixes. Pakistan posted a mountainous 191 for Clarke’s men to climb.

In response, Aamir rocked the Aussie top order with sufficient support from Abdur Rehman. With six wickets down and 48 required off 18 balls, it was left to Mr. Dependable Michael Hussey to pull it off, and what a miraculous act he displayed. Afridi gambled the last over with Ajmal and Hussey with three thunderous sixes made the ground look small, reminding the crowds that T-20 is not always a young man’s game.  Pakistani fans were deserted and people apart from his mother saw Ajmal break down in tears.

Pakistan Vs England Dubai 2010

Having lost the earlier match to England, Pakistan was desperate to level the series. Their bowlers did a decent job by restricting England to 148 on a flat track with Yasir Arafat bagging three wickets. However, fellow batsmen made a mess of their efforts by slumping to 78 for 5, thanks to a brilliant spell from Graeme Swann.

But Abdul Razzaq at the other end shifted games plans and showed his team mates that aggression was the best way to victory. Razzaq, nick-named Popeye for his love of spinach slammed five sixes to re-establish his role as a sheet anchor and give Pakistan their first victory in 11 international outings.

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