Pakistan blow Zimbabwe away to take unbeatable ODI series lead

first_imgPakistan hammered Zimbabwe by nine wickets to take a 3-0 lead in the five-match series in the third ODI on Wednesday in Bulawayo.Captain Hamilton Masakadza won his third successive toss, but Zimbabwe’s batsmen continued to struggle against Pakistan seamers as they were bowled out for their seventh lowest total in their history.Faheem Ashraf starred with the ball as his fast and furious spell rocked the Zimbabwe batsmen and they were bowled out for just 67. Ashraf finished with match figures of 5/22 while Junaid Khan marked his ODI return with 2/7 as Zimbabwe were bowled out in just 25.1 overs.In their reply, Pakistan lost Imam-ul-Haq on the very first ball of their innings when Blessing Mazurabani had Imam caught behind off the with a superb bouncer before Fakhar Zaman smashed the tall fast bowler for four boundaries in one over.Zaman, who was dropped on 2 at first slip, then made an unbeaten 43 off 24 balls and took Pakistan to 69/1 in just 9.5 overs.”A great performance,” Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed said.”Ashraf and Junaid bowl well…Ashraf getting better day by day, he is an allrounder and we need him. We will try to give opportunities to the other players in the next two games.”For his match-winning spell that was his first international five-wicket haul, @iFaheemAshraf is the #ZIMvPAK 3rd ODI Player of the Match! pic.twitter.com/JdNnP53eKQICC (@ICC) July 18, 2018Leg-spinner Yasir Shah, playing his first ODI in almost two years after recovering from hip surgery, bowled seven steady overs for just 10 runs and had No. 8 batsman Tendai Chisoro bowled round his legs.advertisementDebutant opener Prince Masvaure, one of the four changes Zimbabwe made after losing the first two games by 201 runs and nine wickets respectively, was caught behind off fast bowler Usman Khan’s second delivery.Junaid had the Zimbabwe captain caught at mid-off before Tarisai Musakanda was dismissed for zero while going for a needless pull shot off the left-armer.Ashraf then hurried the middle-order collapse by claiming four wickets in four overs and wrapped up the innings by clean bowling last man Richard Ngarava.”It was a bit of a disaster,” Masakadza said.”We just tell the guys to stay positive and try to rectify the wrongs done today. It’s not easy to come back, though…hopefully, we come out firing next game.”Pakistan win the third #ZIMvPAK ODI by 9 wickets and they are up in the series by 3-0.Scorecard https://t.co/Y3tgEB0X3l pic.twitter.com/qPzg08yUxJPCB Official (@TheRealPCB) July 18, 2018Mazurabani provided Zimbabwe something to smile about when he had Imam dismissed off the very first ball and could have removed Zaman but Masakadza dropped a sharp left-handed catch at first slip.Zaman then wrapped up the series by smashing four boundaries off Mazurabani’s one over and then hit a winning four from Ngarava.(With inputs from AP)last_img

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