Haris Rauf’s five-wicket burst sends Afghanistan packing for 59 in pursuit of 202

Published August 22, 2023
Haris Rauf (R) celebrates with teammates after taking the wicket of Afghanistan’s Ikram Alikhil (L) during the first one-day international match between Pakistan and Afghanistan at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota on Tuesday (Aug 22), 2023. — AFP
Haris Rauf (R) celebrates with teammates after taking the wicket of Afghanistan’s Ikram Alikhil (L) during the first one-day international match between Pakistan and Afghanistan at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota on Tuesday (Aug 22), 2023. — AFP
Mohammad Rizwan walks back to the pavilion after his dismissal during the first one-day international match between Pakistan and Afghanistan at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota on Tuesday (Aug 22), 2023. — AFP
Mohammad Rizwan walks back to the pavilion after his dismissal during the first one-day international match between Pakistan and Afghanistan at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota on Tuesday (Aug 22), 2023. — AFP
Afghanistan’s (R) and Pakistan’s players stand for the national anthems before the start of the first one-day international (ODI) cricket match between Pakistan and Afghanistan at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota on Tuesday (Aug 22), 2023. — AFP
Afghanistan’s (R) and Pakistan’s players stand for the national anthems before the start of the first one-day international (ODI) cricket match between Pakistan and Afghanistan at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Hambantota on Tuesday (Aug 22), 2023. — AFP

Fiery pacer Haris Rauf led a pace assault on Afghanistan with a career-best five-wicket haul to give Pakistan a thumping 142-run victory in the first one-day international in Sri Lanka’s Hambantota on Tuesday.

Rauf’s shattering 5-18 in 6.2 overs forced Afghanistan to their second-lowest ODI totals of 59 in a staggering 19.2 overs after Pakistan were bowled out for 201 in 47.1 overs.

The victory gives Pakistan a 1-0 lead in the three-match series — the first bilateral between the two nations — with the remaining matches in Colombo on Thursday and Saturday.

Rauf carried on the demolition act after fellow fast bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi had removed Ibrahim Zadran (nought) and Rahmat Shah (nought) off successive deliveries in the third over.

It had become 3-4 when Naseem Shah dismissed Afghanistan skipper Hashmatullah Shahidi, also without scoring, before passing the baton to Rauf to complete the rout.

Rauf grabbed wickets of Ikram Alikhil (four), top scorer Rahmanullah Gurbaz (18), Mohammad Nabi (seven), Rashid Khan (nought) and Mujeeb Ur Rahman (four) to complete the rout.

Rauf’s previous best of 4-65 was against England at Birmingham in 2021. Shaheen finished with 2-9.

Afghanistan’s lowest in all ODIs is 58 against Zimbabwe in Sharjah in 2016. Earlier Rahman was Pakistan’s wrecker-in-chief.

The 22-year-old dismissed world number one batter Babar Azam for a third-ball duck to finish with figures of 3-33, while Nabi took 2-34 and Rashid 2-42.

Only opener Imam-ul-Haq with a 94-ball 61, Shadab Khan (39) and Iftikhar Ahmed (30) offered some resistance as Pakistan’s much-vaunted batting failed on a slow Hambantota stadium pitch.

Batting first after winning the toss, Pakistan lost opener Fakhar Zaman off the fourth ball of the match for two before Rahman dismissed Azam and Mohammad Rizwan (21) in his first spell.

Haq steadied the innings with a fifth wicket stand of 50 with Ahmed and another 40 with Shadab before Nabi dismissed Haq and Ahmed in quick succession.

Haq’s 17th half century had only two boundaries.

Ace spinner Rashid chipped in with the wickets of Agha Salman (seven) and Shaheen Shah Afridi for two.

Shadab, who hit three boundaries in his 50-ball knock, added an invaluable 35-run stand with Naseem (18 not out) for the ninth wicket before the latter was run out.

Teams

Pakistan: Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan, Mohammad Rizwan, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Agha Salman, Iftikhar Ahmed, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah, Shaheen Shah Afridi

Afghanistan: Hashmatullah Shahidi (captain), Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Ikram Alikhil, Ibrahim Zadran, Rahmat Shah, Mohammad Nabi, Azmatullah Omarzai, Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Fazal Haq Farooqi, Abdul Rahman

Umpires: Nitin Menon (IND) and Ahmed Shah Durrani (AFG)

TV umpire: Sharfuddoula (AFG)

Match referee: Ranjan Madugalle (SRI)

Opinion

Editorial

Saudi investment
Updated 10 Apr, 2024

Saudi investment

The state has to address barriers that stand in the way of attracting foreign investment, and create a pro-business environment.
Charity for change
Updated 11 Apr, 2024

Charity for change

PAKISTANIS are large-hearted people who empty their pockets at the slightest hint of another’s need. The Stanford...
World Bank’s advice
Updated 09 Apr, 2024

World Bank’s advice

The next IMF programme will be far tougher than any other Pakistan has embarked on in the past.
Middle East heat
09 Apr, 2024

Middle East heat

America must communicate to Israel that further provocations, particularly targeting sovereign states, will be unacceptable.
Killing fields
09 Apr, 2024

Killing fields

PERHAPS rankled by the daily flood of grisly news — murders, armed robberies, muggings and kidnappings — and...