Pakistan’s Cricket World Cup hopes ended on Friday but they managed to end their campaign on a high with a 94-run victory against Bangladesh at Lord's.
Teenage fast bowler Shaheen Afridi, who was named player of the match, shone brilliantly as he took six cheap wickets, giving up just 36 runs in the process — the best figures for a Pakistan bowler in the competition's history.
"I'm happy for this performance. It's a special feeling for me, my family, for all of Pakistan. The wicket was slow. The first innings Mustafizur bowled well using cutters and I thought I would use cutters," said the 19-year-old in a post-match speech.
Pakistan ended its run with fifth place on the points table, under New Zealand, whereas Bangladesh ended the 10-team group phase in seventh spot with three wins in their nine matches.
Bangladesh skipper Mashrafe Mortaza said: “We feel very sorry for Shakib that we couldn't support him all through the tournament, otherwise things could have been very different. He has been fantastic. “
Earlier in the day, opener Imamul Haq made a run-a-ball century and Babar Azam scored 96 as they set the Bangladeshis a target of 316 runs.
Bangladesh's Shakib scored his seventh half-century of the tournament, equalling Sachin Tendulkar's record of 2003, before slashing wildly at a ball from Shaheen and being caught out behind for 66.
That knock made Shakib the highest-scoring batsman of the tournament with 606 runs, but Bangladesh's other wickets fell regularly as the side were skittled out in 44 overs.
After winning the toss and finishing on 315-9 in 50 overs, Pakistan needed to dismiss Bangladesh in their last group-stage match for an improbable seven runs or less to overtake fourth-place New Zealand and reach the semifinals.
Although Mohammad Hafeez began Pakistan's bowling attack with a maiden over, Bangladesh reached 8-0 in the 2nd over at Lord’s.
New Zealand joined Australia, India and England in the last four.
Shakib Al Hasan's glorious run this tournament came to an end at 32.1 overs after he was edged and taken out off Shaheen Shah Afridi's ball. The all rounder has amassed seven consecutive half centuries, ESPN Cricinfo reported. Today, he scored 66.
At the end of 30 overs, the win predictor showed a 94 per cent chance at a win for Pakistan.
The Tigers lost their first player in the 6th over when Soumya Sarkar (22 off 22 balls) was caught by Fakhar Zaman off Mohammad Amir.
Tamim Iqbal (8 from 21) was the next to go, bowled out by Shaheen Shah Afridi in the 11th over.
Wahab Riaz then struck for Pakistan in the 18th over, bowling out Mushfiqur Rahim at 16.
Liton Das (32) followed courtesy Shaheen Shah Afridi's ball, caught out by Haris Sohail at cover. Afridi struck again to claim Shakib Al Hasan's wicket at the beginning of the 33rd over.
The pacer also claimed the subsequent wickets of Mahmudullah (29), Mohammad Saifuddin (0), and Mustafizur Rahman (1), putting his total haul at six wickets today.
Sarfaraz Ahmed's side earlier hobbled to a score of 315 as they wrapped up their innings against Bangladesh.
The huge score Pakistan required looked unlikely despite a 100-ball 100 from opener Imamul Haq, who was out in rare fashion by hitting his own wicket two balls after reaching his maiden World Cup century. He is the youngest Pakistani ever to make a World Cup ton.
No. 3 Babar Azam hit 96 in 98 deliveries, including 11 boundaries, four more than Imam.
Babar was denied his second century of the tournament when he fell to a yorker from Mohammad Saifuddin that trapped him lbw. He failed with his review and it left Pakistan at 180-2 after 32 overs.
Babar, 24, has now scored more runs (474) than any other Pakistani at a single World Cup, overtaking Javed Miandad, who bagged 437 runs at the 1992 World Cup.
Imad Wasim (43), in at number six, put up a valiant effort in bringing up the total before he was dismissed by Mustafizur Rahman at third man when two balls were remaining.
Before him, Wahab Riaz (2) and Shadab Khan (1) were dismissed within a ball of one another. Mohammad Amir (8) followed suit courtesy Mustafizur in the last over.
Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed retired hurt on 2 but bravely returned for the last ball of the innings and hit a single to deny Mustafizur his hat trick.
Mustafizur finished with 5-75 off 10 overs.
This is the penultimate day of the group stage with both teams effectively playing their last game at the tournament.
The Green Shirts earlier won the toss at a sunny Lord's and decided to bat first in an effort to keep the outlandish dream of reaching the semi-finals alive.
"One chance, we need to score a lot," said Pakistan skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed after winning the toss. "We know the margin is big, but no changes to our team."
This is the first time in World Cup history that Pakistan have played an unchanged XI in four games straight, ESPNcricinfo reports.
Sarfaraz said although Pakistan's first-game loss to the West Indies was "disappointing", "we want to finish on a high note."
Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza said they would have loved to bat first as well.
"We've been playing well against Pakistan, but they are starting to take off. Won't be easy. It's going to be my last World Cup match and I would love to win with this team,” he said.
Bangladesh made two changes from their loss to India on Tuesday. Mahmudullah is fit again and comes in for middle-order batsman Sabbir Rahman. Spinner Mehidy Hasan replaces fast bowler Rubel Hossain.
Bangladesh have won the last four ODIs against Pakistan. Pakistan have a 31-5 overall record against Bangladesh in completed matches.
- Tamim Iqbal
- Soumya Sarkar
- Shakib Al Hasan
- Mushfiqur Rahim
- Liton Das
- Mosaddek Hossain
- Mehidy Hasan Miraz
- Mohammad Saifuddin
- Mashrafe Mortaza
- Mustafizur Rahman
- Fakhar Zaman
- Babar Azam
- Mohammad Hafeez
- Haris Sohail
- Sarfaraz Ahmed
- Imad Wasim
- Shadab Khan
- Mohammad Amir
- Wahab Riaz
- Shaheen Afridi