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Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Babar Azam, Ifthikhar Ahmed hit tons in Pakistan’s 238-run win over Nepal

World primary batter Babar Azam and Iftikhar Ahmed scored punishing tons of as Pakistan annihilated Nepal by 238 runs within the opening recreation of the Asia Cup in Multan on Wednesday.

Skipper Azam smashed a 131-ball 151 for his nineteenth ODI hundred whereas Ahmed scored an unbeaten 109 in 71 balls for his first as Pakistan piled up 342-6 in 50 overs.

The house crew then bundled out Nepal for a mere 104 in 23.4 overs with leg-spinner Shadab Khan taking 4-27 whereas the tempo duo of Haris Rauf took 2-16 and Shaheen Shah Afridi 2-27.

Solely Sompal Kami (28), Aarif Sheikh (26) and Gulsan Jha (13) made it into double figures as they struggled towards Pakistan’s much-vaunted bowling assault.

The win provides Pakistan, who rose to world primary within the ODI rankings final week, a super begin and tune up for the excessive profile conflict towards arch-rivals India in Pallekele on Saturday.

The Asia Cup is being performed on a hybrid mannequin this yr with Pakistan internet hosting 4 matches and Sri Lanka 9 after India refused to tour Pakistan due to political tensions.

Pakistan, India and Nepal are in Group Some time title-holders Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Afghanistan are in Group B.

Additionally learn: Asia Cup 2023: From India, Pakistan to Afghanistan, Nepal – Full squads, crew information and extra

Sri Lanka and Bangladesh meet in Pallekele on Thursday.

Nepal, enjoying within the Asia Cup for the primary time, had bowled nicely to maintain the house crew all the way down to 124-4 within the twenty eighth over however have been clueless within the last overs towards the onslaught from Azam and Ahmed.

The pair added a sturdy 214 off 131 balls for the fifth wicket, which took Pakistan to a formidable complete.

Azam cracked 14 boundaries and 4 sixes whereas Ahmed hit 11 boundaries and 4 sixes, serving to Pakistan to 129 runs within the final 10 overs together with 67 within the last 5.

Azam was dropped on 55 when Karan Chhetri put down a caught-and-bowled probability, whereas Nepal’s floor fielding additionally usually faltered.

Pakistan misplaced opener Fakhar Zaman for 14 within the sixth over, whereas Imam-ul-Haq was run out for 5 to depart Pakistan tottering at 25-2.

Azam added 86 for the third wicket with Mohammad Rizwan (44) earlier than Rizwan was additionally run out. Agha Salman fell for 5, leaving Azam and Ahmed to mount a rescue operation.

Ahmed’s earlier finest ODI rating was 94 not out towards New Zealand in Karachi this yr.

Quick bowler Kami was one of the best for Nepal with 2-85.

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