After looking to effect an unbelievable turnaround in their World Cup campaign, Pakistani batting has come a cropper again when faced with a modest target against minnows Afghanistan. Chasing just 228, Pakistan have been reduced to 169/6 in 42 overs and have only Imad Wasim left as a recognised frontline batsman.
The only saving grace and the ray of hope that Pakistan has is the presence of Shadab Khan at the other end. He is a capable batsman and has played some very useful innings. However, Pakistan taem would be hugely disappointed after the poor showing that has been witnessed in this game from their batsmen after a brilliant chase against New Zealand in the last game.
Babar Azam was once again leading the chase and batting beautifully but when he was dismissed for 45 at the team score of 81 in the 18th over, the game turned. Mohammad Hafeez and Haris Sohail resurrected the innings and seemed to taking their team towards safety but this partnership was broken in the 30th over with the score at 121. The wicket of Haris Sohai followed in the 35th over but the killer blow came when captain Sarfaraz Ahmed got run out in the 39th over and Pakistan were reduced to 156/6.
The damage has been done by spin again for Afghanistan. Mujib-ur-Rahman, Rashid Khan and Mohammad Nabi strangled Pakistan the same way they had India. Mujib and Nabi have picked two wickets each and Rashid has one so far. With five overs from Rashid and Mujib left out of eight, things are not looking good.