KARACHI: Pakistan made short work of minnows Nigeria as they cantered to a nine-wicket victory in their opening warm-up fixture of the 2020 ICC Under-19 World Cup in Centurion on Sunday.

Opting bat first after captain Sylvester Okpe had won the toss, Nigeria’s innings lasted just 36.2 overs when they were bowled for 109 at the Hammanskraal Mandela Oval after being 68-1 in the 19th over.

The only batsmen to enter doubles were opener Sulaimon Runsewe — who struggled to pace his innings while facing 79 deliveries for his 29 runs that included a solitary boundary — and Samuel Oba, who hit three boundaries in a 29-ball 20.

Aamir Ali, the 17-year-old slow left-armer from Dadu, grabbed three wickets for 12 runs in eight overs. Seamer Abbas Afridi claimed 2-12 in seven overs, while occasional off-spinner Qasim Akram took 2-26 in his five overs.

Talented Haider Ali then helped himself to a quickfire 78 from only 38 balls as the Pakistan vice-captain banged eight fours and four sixes before retiring out with the total on 87 at the completion of the 10th over.

Mohammad Shehzad (18 off 34 balls, one four) and Fahad Munir (14 off 178, two fours) completed the last rites as Pakistan won in 14.3 overs.

Pakistan — who are in Group ‘C’ with Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and Scotland of the World Cup — take on Sri Lanka in their remaining warm-up game at the Irene Villagers Cricket Club ground in Centurion on Tuesday.

Brief scores:

NIGERIA 109 in 36.2 overs (Sulaimon Runsewe 29, Samuel Mba 20; Aamir Ali 3-12, Abbas Afridi 2-12, Qasim Akram 2-26); PAKISTAN 110-1 in 14.3 overs (Haider Ali 70 retired out, Mohammad Shehzad 18 not out, Fahad Munir 14 not out).

Published in Dawn, January 13th, 2020