Shehzad’s 89 leads Pakistan to Independence Cup triumph

Opener Ahmed Shehzad produced a high quality batting performance to lead Pakistan to a 33-run victory over World XI at Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore on Friday.Going into the final match with series leveled at 1-1, both teams made numerous changes ahead of the all-important encounter and it was visitors captain Faf du Plessis who won the toss and opted to bowl first.

His decision backfired as Pakistan posted a mammoth total of 183 for the loss of four wickets, courtesy Shehzad’s breathtaking 89 off just 55 balls with the help of eight fours and three sixes.He was well supported by young Babar Azam, who scored 48 off 31 with the help of five glorious boundaries.

Second T20Is man of the match Thisara Perera was the pick of the bowlers for World XI, as he claimed two wickets and just gave away 37 runs in his four overs.

In reply, even after having a solid start, World XI kept losing wickets at regular intervals and never really get going.

Perera and South African David Miller, who finished the innings with the joint top score of 32 each off 13 and 29 balls respectively, managed to post 45-run sixth wicket partnership, but it was never going to be enough as World Xi only managed to score 150 for the loss of eight wickets in their allotted 20 overs.

The most impressive thing from the hosts was their fielding, as they managed three run outs in the innings.

For Pakistan, returning pacer Hasan Ali, who missed the previous match due to injury, was the pick of the bowlers after finishing with the figure of two for 28 in his quota of four overs.

For his outstanding batting performance, Shahzad was awarded man of the match. Babar Azam was named man of the series for brilliant performances in all three games played against World XI.

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