Afridi spins Pakistan to a thrilling win
by CricketArchive staff reporter
DateLine: 1st March 2011
Just before the tournament began Pakistan was termed as the ‘dark horses'
and today they lived up to that billing.The Pakistani side withstood a late surge from the lower middle order to defeat Sri Lanka by 11 runs to register their second win.It was an all-round performance from the Pakistani side as they proved too hot the Lankans to stand against them.
Chasing a challenging 278 for a win under lights, the Lankan openers put
on 76 for the first wicket before a superb catch from Afridi ended the stand. It was then Afridi show all the way. Afridi then bowled a tidy line and length as Dilshan was bowled.Afridi came back much later and had Sangakkara taking chances against him because the asking run rate had climbed to eight-plus. Sangakkara holed out at long on, becoming Afridi's 300th ODI wicket.
In the 19th over Shoaib breached the defences of a clueless Jayawardena in
the next over and it was then the Lankans lost the plot. Thilan Samaraweera departed without doing much but Chamara Silva provided the support that Sangakkara needed. The Sri Lankan 50 runs came in 67 balls and the 100 came in
135 balls but kept losing wickets at regular intervals.
Earlier, Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq, propelled Pakistan to a fighting
total against Sri Lanka. Openers Mohammad Hafeez and Ahmed Shehzad looked
better than they did in the first match After Shehzad's departure, it was left to Hafeez to take the attack to the opposition camp. The exit of Kamran brought
Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis together. They took time to settle down and, then
began a phase of consolidation in singles and twos. The 200 came up in 38.3 overs. The duo brought up the 50 runs partnership in 59 balls; 100 runs in 113 balls.Younis perished trying to accelerate while Afridi added some late flourish.