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Debutant Talat shines as Pakistan set 204 target for West Indies

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Debutant Talat shines as Pakistan set 204 target for West Indies

Debutant Talat shines as Pakistan set 204 target for West Indies

KARACHI: A sure-footed 41 by debutant Hussain Talat and a late cameo by veteran Shoaib Malik powered Pakistan to a mammoth 203-5 in the first match of the three-T20I series against West Indies at National Stadium on Sunday.

This is Pakistan’s joint-highest score in the shortest format of the game, with the previous best also being 203-5 against Bangladesh in 2008, also in Karachi.

West Indies put brakes on a flying start by Pakistan with two quick wickets after opting to bowl first, as the City of Lights lit up to welcome the return of international cricket after a hiatus of nine years.

West Indies had their first breakthrough as pacer Emrit removed Babar Azam for 13-ball 17, with Pakistan at 46-1.

Fakhar Zaman hit 39 off 24 balls before he was run out, leaving Pakistan at 65-2 in the eighth over.

Hussain Talat, who debuted today along with this Islamabad United teammate Asif Ali, fell short of a memorable fifty, getting run out after a 37-ball 41.

Skipper Sarfraz Ahmed contributed with a 22-ball 38, hitting some measured shots to steer Pakistan towards a respectable total.

Asif Ali, who rose to fame with his six-hitting ability in PSL 2018, had a forgettable debut with just 1 run.

Shoaib Malik smashed 37 off just 14 balls in the last overs, as West Indies struggled in the field with injuries and misfields.

Earlier, Hussain Talat and Asif Ali were handed their T20I debut caps by former captains Ramiz Raja and Waqar Younis ahead of the toss.

Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed said he was proud and excited to be leading his team on home soil, as international cricket returns to Karachi after a hiatus of nine years.

“It feels great to be playing on our home soil, in front of our home crowd,” the skipper said at the toss, adding that the pitch looks good for batting.

Playing XI

Pakistan XI: Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Sarfraz Ahmed (c, wk), Hussain Talat, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Nawaz, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali

West Indies XI: Jason Mohammed (c), Andre Fletcher, Rovman Powell, Marlon Samuels, Keemo Paul, Denesh Ramdin (wk), Kesrick Williams, V Permaul, Chadwick Walton, Rayad Emrit, Samuel Badree.

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