Australia lead the series by 1-0 with a big win over Pakistan

After showing another outstanding performance, Australia defeated Pakistan by eight wickets in the first game of the five-match one-day international series at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Friday and lead the series by 1-0.

Aaron Finch of Australia is congratulated by Shaun Marsh of Australia  after reaching his half century during the first One Day International match between Pakistan and Australia at Sharjah

Pakistan’s remain in captain Shoaib Malik prior won the toss and batted, naming debutants Shan Masood and Mohammad Abbas in a side shorn of six first-choice players.

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Massive youthful speedy Jhye Richardson (1-64) had a costly evening and a trio of boundaries struck off him by Masood off one Power Play over affirmed the track was as dormant as the Aussies had foreseen. Finch’s initial decision of calling spinners from the two ends quickly satisfied as Imam-ul-Haq hit back a basic caught and-bowled to the cheap Nathan Lyon (1-38 off 10).

Coulter-Nile came back with energy after his opening spell to thump over Masood, who cleaved on for 40, as the relentless Sohail and the unstable Umar Akmal (48 off 50 balls) put on 98 for the third wicket.

Reviewed on the back of a noteworthy Pakistan Super League crusade, Akmal offered two troublesome shots in seven balls, both to Peter Handscomb, who first spilt an intense catch after a rambling plunge, at that point just scarcely getting a fingertip on one at deep square leg. Akmal and Malik got out in progressive overs, however after the Australians immediately got the breakthroughs, Pakistan quickened by and by gratitude to late appearances from Faheem Ashraf (29 off 27) and after that Imad Wasim (28 off 13).

Sohail achieved his maiden century in the final over, a half year after his maiden Test hundred that had additionally come against Australia, as he and Imad clacked 56 off the last five overs of the innings. And most noticeably, Pakistan took 53 runs in their last five overs and ended their innings at 280 runs with the loss of 5 wickets.

Chasing the target of 281 runs, Usman Khawaja and Aaron Finch made a good start again which they did against India in the previous series. They made another 50 plus partnership, but Khawaja got out at 24 runs from 30 balls by Faheem Ashraf and their partnership ended at 63 runs.

After that, it was just Aaron Finch and Shaun Marsh’s show. Finch posted his 12th ODI century, and first in any format since July. Finch dispersed any questions over his place at the top of the order, coming back to his fearsome best form as he coupled ground-breaking driving down the ground with guaranteed back-foot play. The 32-year-old raised triple-digits by crushing Shoaib Malik out of the arena. He was at last dismissed by Mohammad Abbas who took his maiden ODI wicket. Finch scored 116 runs off 135 balls with triumph in sight. His innings consisted of 8 fours and 4 sixes.

On the other hand, Marsh who was dropped for the final ODI against India reminded his potential again and scored an unbeaten innings of 91 runs from 102 balls with 4 fours and 2 sixes. Finch and Marsh made a huge partnership of 172 runs in the 2nd wicket. Then, Peter Handscomb came to show his form again and did the finishing touch by scoring an unbeaten 30 runs from 27 balls. And Australia secured an easy 8 wickets win over Pakistan.

It was Australia’s fifth-highest ODI run chase in Asia.

Both the two teams will try heart and soul to do better performances and find out the problems to begin preparation for their World Cup campaign which is going to be started from 23rd May. The next ODI will take place on March 24 at Sharjah again.


Brief Score:

Pakistan 280-5

Haris Sohail 101*(115), Umar Akmal 48(50)

Nathan Coulter-Nile 2/61, Nathan Lyon 1/38


Australia 281-2 (49 overs)

Aaron Finch 116(135), Shaun Marsh 91*(102)

Mohammad Abbas 1/44, Faheem Ashraf 1/50


Toss: Pakistan

Result: Australia won by 8 wickets

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