In a low-scoring thriller, Naseem Shah’s two sixes in the final over enabled Pakistan advance to the Asia Cup 2022 final and eliminate India.
Babar Azam invited Afghanistan to bat first, and they responded by setting Pakistan a 130-run target for them to reach in their 20 overs.
Afghanistan’s dismissal for 130 seemed to seal the victory, but Mohammad Nabi and company’s outstanding bowling gave the Green Shirts a fight for their money.When Pakistan lost in-form Mohammad Rizwan at the end of the ninth over with just 48 runs on the board, it appeared as though the Men in Green were in trouble. Pakistan lost Fakhar Zaman and Babar Azam in the first six overs.
Iftikhar Ahmed and Shadab Khan’s 42-run partnership helped guarantee that by the end of the 16th over, the mark was within reach despite persistent pressure from Afghanistan’s bowlers.
After the partnership was broken and Pakistan dropped quick, inexpensive wickets, the tides changed in Afghanistan’s favour.
Pakistan needed 21 from 12 balls in the final two overs and only had three wickets in hand. Fareed Ahmad took two wickets in the second to last over, including Asif Ali, who was an important target.Pakistan only had their numbers 10 and 11, Naseem and Mohammad Hasnain, on the crease at the end of his over, needing 11 off 6 balls.
However, Pakistan was able to wrest victory from the jaws of defeat thanks to Naseem’s two sixes off the first two balls of the penultimate over. Pakistan will now play Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup final thanks to the one-wicket victory.