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Shadab bags three wickets as Pakistan romp to resounding win in tour game
Match Report

Shadab bags three wickets as Pakistan romp to resounding win in tour game

Pakistan completed a comfortable six-wicket win over Cricket Australia XI in the 20-over warm-up game ahead of the three-match T20I series due to begin on Sunday.

Pakistan were helped by an excellent bowling spell from Shadab Khan and a solid top-order performance to sound a warning to the rampant Australia side currently engaged in a series against Sri Lanka.

Mohammad Irfan, making a comeback to the national side after three years, removed opener Ryan Gibson with a splendid delivery on the first ball of the innings after Cricket Australia XI elected to bat first.

Skipper Chris Lynn then tried to resolve the early troubles with a counter-attack that saw him smash four boundaries and a solitary maximum en route to a 16-ball 24.

His dismissal via a searing delivery from Wahab Riaz tightened the screws over the CA XI as they subsequently found it difficult to score runs.

Shadab's ripping leg-breaks caused great harm to the opposition signalling a return to form following an ordinary outing against Sri Lanka in the 0-3 loss at home.

After sending Alex Ross back to the pavilion, Shadab picked up the wickets of Nathan McSweeney and Baxter Holt on successive balls to restrict the hosts to a modest 134-6.

“I think they [Pakistan] have got a stronger side than the Sri Lankans. They have guys who can bowl 150km/h and batsmen who are world-class. They put on a clinical performance today which is why they're one of the top T20 teams in the world," Lynn said following the match.

He admitted Pakistan's versatile bowling attack was superior to the one Sri Lanka possessed and could prove to be a potent force against Australia in the forthcoming series.

"They've got a left-arm spinner in Imad Wasim and Shadab Khan who is a genius with the ball as well. Our batters will have a tougher challenge than against Sri Lanka,” he added.

Pacers Musa Khan and Mohammad Hasnain and uncapped leg-spinner Usman Qadir warmed the bench giving the experienced bowlers the chance to get requisite match practice.

Pakistan's chase saw newly appointed captain Babar Azam and opening batter Fakhar Zaman stitch a breezy 78-run stand for the first wicket.

An array of scintillating strokes from the two deflated the home side forcing Lynn to make frequent bowling changes.

Babar's dismissal brought Haris Sohail to the crease, who smoked three sixes in an over to spinner Daniel Fallins before departing for a quickfire 32 off 22 balls.

With Pakistan requiring three runs for victory, Asif Ali got out to Ben Dwarshuis for a duck while wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan spent 13 balls in the middle to score seven runs.