SHARJAH: All-rounder Shahid Afridi took five wickets, while Younis Khan and Imran Farhat both hit half-centuries as Pakistan beat Afghanistan by seven wickets in the day-night international here on Friday.
Afridi claimed 5-36 as Afghanistan were bowled out for 195 in 48.3 overs before Younis hit an unbeaten 70 and Farhat made 52 to help Pakistan reach their modest target in 37.1 overs in the first-ever one-dayer between the two countries.
Despite the loss, Afghanistan still put up an inspired display at Sharjah Stadium, justifying their rise in international cricket which saw them win the right to play one-dayers in 2009.
Earlier Afridi derailed Afghanistan’s progress who were set on track for a fighting total by opener Karim Sadiq (40) after they won the toss and decided to bat.
Afridi also became the second spinner with the highest number of one-day wickets (338) behind Muttiah Muralitharan (534), but surpassing India’s Anil Kumble who had 333 wickets.
Despite Afridi’s brilliance, the Afghan batsmen put up an excellent show and had they not lacked experience -- playing their first one-day international against a top nation -- they would have scored more.
Pakistan now play England in the first of four one-day internationals on Monday.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 11th, 2012.
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