An exceptional innings of 75 by Sussex’s Liam O’Brien proved in vain as England fell to a 45-run defeat against Pakistan in the Vitality IT20 Physical Disability Tri-Series Final.
Pakistan’s impressive score of 189-7 was too tall a task for England who were bowled out for 144 in reply.
Pakistan got off to another flying start after being inserted by England captain Iain Nairn, racing to 80 without loss.
Hasnain Alam (48) looked particularly dangerous before being run out by a strong throw from the deep by Alex Hammond.
Nevertheless, Pakistan looked well placed at the halfway stage at 92-1. Freddie Bridges struck shortly afterwards as the in-form Muhammad Shahbaz went went leg before for 34.
Tiwana (13) hit a few lusty blows before Matt Askin took to a great catch at deep midwicket to give Jordan Williams his first wicket.
Jamie Goodwin dismissed Majid Hussain for 19 but Saif Ullah continued to attack and his 31, along with skipper Nihar Alam’s quick cameo of 12* helped Pakistan finish on 189-7. O’Brien continued his good tournament with two wickets.
England's hopes of chasing it down quickly receded as left-arm quick Abdullah Ejaz ripped through their top order. He removed Liam Thomas (2), Alex Hammond (16), yesterday’s hero Callum Flynn for a golden duck, Nairn (7) and Matt Askin (1) in a spell of fast bowling the Pakistan greats of Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis would have been proud of. He finished with figures of 5-22 as England were left reeling at 42-6.
Enter Liam O’Brien. The Preston Nomads man showed defiance in an almost impossible situation, hitting the Pakistan attack to all parts of the ground in his 40-ball 75. He received spirited support from Williams (17) in a partnership of 63 which briefly had England daring to dream.
Ultimately, he ran out of partners with Pakistan ending the tournament as deserving winners.
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