Azam, Malik steer Pakistan to series win over West Indies
Pakistan 337-5 (Azam 123) beat
West Indies 278-7 (Bravo 61) by 59 runs
Second One-Day International in Sharjah
Babar Azam scored his second consecutive century, while Shoaib Malik scored a fluent 90 as Pakistan registered a 59-run win over West Indies in the second One-Day International in Sharjah thereby sealing the series 2-0.
Pakistan won the toss and elected to bat first again but lost their openers, Azhar Ali (9) and Sharjeel Khan (24) early and were restricted to 55 for two in the powerplay.
Malik (90) was dealing in boundaries, while Azam (123) looked solid at the other end as the pair looked to rebuild the innings. Their 50-run stand came in the 17th over. By the halfway mark, Pakistan looked comfortable at 142 for two with both Malik and Azam reaching their respective half-centuries.
Malik went severe on Sulieman Benn (0-61) as he plundered him for three consecutive sixes in the 27th over while also bringing the 100-run stand with Azam.
The 169-run stand finally ended when Malik was caught at backward point off Sunil Narine (1-39) and Pakistan reached 217 for three by the end of 35 overs.
Azam soon brought his second consecutive century in the series off 111 deliveries. Despite, Pakistan managing to remove Azam and Imad Wasim (11), Sarfraz Ahmed (60 not out) played a blinder of innings to take the total to 337 for five in the 50 overs.
West Indies got off to a worst possible start as Mohammad Amir (1-49) got rid of Johnson Charles (2) early. Even though Kraig Brathwaite (39) and Darren Bravo (61) looked to consolidate, their 89 run stand came off 118 deliveries, exerting a lot of pressure on the batsmen to come.
With both the batsmen run out, Marlon Samuels (57) and Denesh Ramdin (34) tried to get going but with no batsmen scoring big, West Indies eventually succumbed to pressure and fell short of the target by 59 runs.
The win has given Pakistan an unassailable lead of 2-0 in the series while Azam was once again the man of the match.
© Cricket World 2016