Pakistan skipper Shaheen Shah Afridi revealed that the Men in Green have sorted out 16 to 20 players for the upcoming T20 World Cup 2024 following the conclusion of the five-match series against New Zealand. Pakistan stood victorious in the final T20I against the Kiwis with a 42-run victory but were humbled throughout the series. Iftikhar Ahmed shone with his off-spin on a track that tended to fall on the slower side. After the game, Shaheen hailed the veteran spinner for his contribution and that the team has sorted out players for the World Cup which is slated to begin in June later this year.
“Ifti (Iftikhar) is a very experienced player and he’s always ready for bowling but we wanted to give everyone a proper chance so we were planning to give chances to youngsters this series, we sorted out 16-20 players (for the World Cup). I want to thank everyone, the crowd was fantastic,” Shaheen said after the game.
The experienced off-break spinner, Iftikhar bagged the Player of the Match award for his game-changing spell of 3-24.
After the game, he talked about the game plan that was hidden behind his successful outing and said, “I read the wicket and bowled accordingly, the wicket was turning so I tried to bowl wicket by wicket. Yes it was decided that I will bowl today, Shaheen told me before the game and I was preparing for it. If the captain wants, I am available to bowl as I have done before as well.”
Coming to the match, after winning the toss and succumbing to a total of 134/8, Pakistan bounced back with a clinical bowling spell.
Pakistan played their cards correctly on a surface that fell on a slower side. Zaman Khan and Nawaz provided the ideal start to the visitors in the powerplay by removing Rachin Ravindra (1) and Finn Allen (22).
The pressure of constantly increasing gap between runs and balls crept into the minds of Kiwi batters. They tried to play on the aggressive foot but continued to lose wickets at regular intervals.
With two wickets in hand, Glenn Phillips (26) tried to fight the battle on his own, shifted through gears in the end, scored a four and then a maximum to keep NZ in the chase.
But skipper Shaheen Afridi’s pace got better of Phillips and then Lockie Ferguson which helped them avoid a whitewash.
(This story has been edited by Mahaz News staff …)
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Source website: sports.ndtv.com