The in-form Pakistani team went into their game against India as one of the favourites to win the World T20; they have come out of it with the possibility of now being knocked out. Can they hold their nerve to beat Australia in Colombo today?
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Pakistan win, South Africa knocked out! Australia have qualified, but Pakistan will only qualify if the Proteas beat India. Australia manage 117/7 in their 20 overs chasing 150. Hussey remains not out after giving Pakistan a 2010-like scare for a moment, great bowling by the Pakistani spinners. Raza Hasan 4-14-2, Saeed Ajmal 4-17-3 and Mohammad Hafeez 4-22-2 the pick of the bowlers. Hafeez's men will now head back to their hotel and keep a close eye on the match that follows, they will be hoping South Africa finally register a win in the Super Eights. Raza Hasan declared man of the match.
BOUNDARY - Hussey cuts the first delivery from Gul for a four through point, brings up his 50 and Australia qualify for the semis. 35 from 4 balls.
WICKET - Ajmal bowls the penultimate over! 4 from first four deliveries and a wicket off the fifth. Wade clean bowled trying a paddle sweep. Cummins comes and goes, LBW first ball to Ajmal! Hogg, Doherty and Starc to come.
Gul comes on in the 18th over. His first delivery is a perfect yorker that missed Hussey's off stump! Great over by Gul, only four from it, perfect length!
BOUNDARY - Afridi fires a fast one, it takes Hussey's legs on its way to the boundary! 49 off 18.
BOUNDARY - Hussey lofts Afridi to a four towards long on. Gul still unused!
BOUNDARY - Wade sweeps Ajmal powerfully for four! Pakistani fans must be thinking 2010 World T20 with Hussey still at the crease. 90/5 in 16. 60 off 24 balls.
BOUNDARY - Four and a six! Hussey getting into the grove, picks Malik on the leg side for 10 off his last two deliveries. 14 off the over.
Five runs and a wicket from that Hasan over. Wade and Hussey at the crease, Pakistan traditionally struggle against lefties, so Ajmal must be utilised now. Australia 68/4 in 14.
WICKET - Maxwell dances down the wicket and edge Hasan to point where Malik takes a simple catch! Australia 5 down now.
Only five from that Afridi over. Australia 63/4 in 13. Ajmal has two while Hasan has one left.
WICKET - White attempts another one, gets the bottom of the bat and the skier is taken by Imran Nazir on the long on boundary!
BOUNDARY - SIX! White finally gets one in the middle for a long time. He will look to kick on from here, Hafeez was too short on that occasion.
Three runs from that Hasan over, Australia 48/3 in 11. When will Umar Gul come on and will Razzaq get a bowl? Hafeez to bowl now.
Two appeals in two balls, and Ajmal finally gets on in his favour! Bailey attempted a slog-sweep but the ball just did not arrive. Cameron White and Glenn Maxwell to follow. White and Hussey negotiate, Pakistan fans would like to see Hafeez persist with Ajmal. Hasan to bowl from the other end.
BOUNDARY - SIX! Bailey picks Afrid's googly and slams it over long on for a huge six! Time to bring on Ajmal?
Hafeez should have persisted with Ajmal, but Shoaib Malik has been brought on, his first bowl in the tournament. Only five runs conceded from that over, not a bad start. Afridi to continue from the other end.
BOUNDARY - Afridi is too short and too wide, Bailey guides him through point for four! Afridi looks out of sorts here.
Ajmal into the attack, will he get Michael Hussey?
WICKET - Hafeez gets Warner this time! Another attempted sweep gone wrong! 19/2 in 5 overs.
WICKET - The umpire gives it this time, Hasan traps Watson in front who attempted to sweep. Watson, for the first time in the World T20, gets dismissed without making a significant contribution.
Warner survives a LBW shot on Hafeez's last delivery, replays show it would have hit leg stump! On the evidence of that Ajmal should be brought on early.
BOUNDARY - Watson squeezes that one through point, just a little short from Raza Hasan. Great shot from Watson, played that from middle stump.
BOUNDARY- Too short from Hafeez and Warner pulls him with a ll the time in the world.
Hafeez starts for Pakistan. He has a pretty good record against Warner, but will it work today?
Starc bowls the perfect final over gives away just nine considering he was smashed for a four first ball. Pakistan restricted to 149, ideally they would have been looking for something upwards of 160. Jamshed top scored with 55 off 46 (4 fours, 2 sixes) but got out at the wrong time one feels. Starc was excellent and returned figures of 4-20-3 while Watson continue his great form and ended with 4-23-1. How will Australia go about this chase? The typical Watson-Warner crash-bang? Will Hafeez be brave enough to bring Ajmal on during the power play?
WICKET - Afridi stay lasts for just one ball, as he moves towards the off stump for an attempted tickle towards fine leg. Middle stump up rooted!
BOUNDARY - Shahid Afridi provides the ideal start to the last over, hits Starc over his head for four!
BOUNDARY - Umar Akmal somehow manages to squeeze Cummins through short third man! Much needed boundary, Pakistan would ideally want 20 off the last over. 140/5 in 19.
WICKET - Cummins gets Razzaq off a slower bouncer!
Australian bowlers have kept it really tight and Pakistan's late push just hasn't come. Razzaq and Umar will need to improvise it seems!
BOUNDARY - SIX! Cummins proved too smart for Razzaq for the first five deliveries before the batsman finally read the well-disguised slower ball and fetched it over long off! 123/4 in 17.
WICKET - Kamran follows as he tries to hit Starc through the covers, that uppish drive was pouched safely by Cameron White. 108/4 in 15.1. Razzaq to the crease.
WICKET - Jamshed tries to crash Doherty but does not get under it, simple catch for long on! Not the right time for Pakistan to lose a wicket, but Umar Akmal, Razzaq and Afridi to follow. Can they motor on?
BOUNDARY- Four and a six! First Jamshed plays a tennis shot over Hogg's head and then Kamran picks him over the long on boundary! 14 runs from that over!
10 runs from that Watson over, Pakistan 89/2 in 13. They need at least a good 60-70 runs in the last seven overs to be competitive against the likes of Watson and Warner.
BOUNDARY - Jamshed drills Watson over his head for four, another great start to the over, how many will Pakistan get in this over?
BOUNDARY- SIX! Jamshed welcomes Doherty back into the attack with a huge six over mid-wicket! He continues to spank the ball around but finds the fielders, 9 runs off the over.
BOUNDARY - SIX! Jamshed pulls a slower bouncer from Cummins over the square leg fence! Cummins has one of the best slower ball in the business but it is yet to account for many wickets.
BOUNDARY - Jamshed hits the second boundary of the over on the second-last ball as he works the ball down mid-on and Maxwell fumbles. Pakistan are halfway through their innings. 60-2 in 10 overs. Mathew Wade appeals for caught behind off the last delivery but the umpire remained unmoved.
Akmal pushes the first delivery of Hogg's second over through the covers for his first boundary. The next ball, swept, should have resulted in an another boundary but didn't.
There's a lot of sweeping and reverse-sweeping going on but it is only resulting in singles and doubles. 49-2 in nine overs. Jamshed moves to 20 off 27 while Kamran gets into double figures 10(10).
Jameshed looks a bit hesitant against the bowling of Brad Hogg and Pakistan are only able to score four singles off the eighth over.
Australia re-introduce spin, this time in the form of off-spinner Glenn Maxwell. Kamran Akmal and Nasir Jamshed keep it to six singles in the over and take the score to 37-2 in 7.
WICKET - Imran Nazir scoops Shane Watson's third delivery of the sixth over and Australian captain George Bailey makes no mistake at mid-off to dent Pakistan further. Imran Nazir made 14 runs off 13 balls, hitting two fours. Kamran Akmal walks in.
BOUNDARY - Another four as this time, Nazir drives through the covers off the back foot after Starc bowls a wide on the third delivery.
BOUNDARY - Imran Nazir whips the first delivery of the fifth over towards the leg side for a four down square leg.
BOUNDARY- Jamshed drives a wide delivery from man of the tournament Shane Watson through the covers to ruin an otherwise tight over. Starc will continue from the other end, his full-pitched, swinging deliveries have so far been tough to get counter for the Pakistan batsmen.
WICKET- Starc picks up Hafeez with his first ball, the inswinging yorker from the tall left-armer traps the batsman right in front! Not the best of starts, Nasir Jamshed now in and Glen Maxwell drops him in the slips!
Australia have started with the left-arm spin of Xavier Doherty, Imran Nazir and Mohammad Hafeez looked pretty comfortable, let's see how they fare again the pace of Mitchell Starc.
While Abdul Razzaq did play the two warm-up matches; he was only part of the action in the second one, against England. In that match, he scored 12 runs off 18 deliveries and only bowled one over and gave away nine runs. Prior to this tournament, he was part of Pakistan's squad in the Twenty20 series against Australia, where his scored in the two matches that he batted in were 13 and 2*. On the bowling front, he took two wickets in the first T20 for nine runs, while he remained wicket-less for 12 runs in the third T20.
News from the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo is that George Bailey has won the toss and has asked Pakistan to bat first. Veteran all-rounder Abdul Razzaq is replacing Yasir Arafat in this do-or-die encounter. Australia, meanwhile, are fielding an unchanged side.
After the toss, Pakistan captain Mohammad Hafeez said he would have liked to bowl first had he won the toss but is not disappointed losing it either.
“It’s a good pitch so we will be looking at a target of 150-plus.”
The Pakistan captain says his team are taking every match at a time and have moved on from the loss against India on Sunday.
Pakistan need to rethink their strategy for today's World Twenty20 Super Eight game against undefeated Australia after suffering an eight-wicket loss to India, coach Dav Whatmore said.
“We need to rethink a few things, that's for sure, and that will be done,” Whatmore told reporters in Colombo without elaborating further.
What will be Pakistan's new strategy? Can a drastic change be expected in the line up? Pakistan have Abdul Razzaq, Mohammad Sami and Asad Shafiq on the bench.
The Pakistan squad that played against India was: Mohammad Hafeez, Imran Nazir, Nasir Jamshed, Kamran Akmal (wk), Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Shahid Afridi, Yasir Arafat, Raza Hasan, Umar Gul, Saeed Ajmal.
Is there a need for a shuffle? Our in depth preview puts forward the question: Can captain Hafeez handle the pressure of a possible knockout situation after facing a storm of criticism for Pakistan's loss to India?