Pakistan’s captain Babar Azam (L) plays a shot as Afghanistan´s wicketkeeper Mohammad Shahzad watches during the ICC Twenty20 World Cup cricket match between Afghanistan and Pakistan at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in Dubai on October 29, 2021 (left) and Asif Ali celebrates win in the ICC Twenty20 World Cup cricket match between Afghanistan and Pakistan at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in Dubai on October 29, 2021. — AFP
  • Asif Ali smashes amazing sixes in second-last over to lead Pakistan to victory.
  • “Asif’s hitting was clean, and that’s why we selected him,” Babar Azam says.
  • “I was very confident Asif would get us out of any trouble we find ourselves in.”

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam on Friday revealed why he had selected hard-hitting batter, Asif Ali, to the T20 World Cup squad.

The skipper Babar Azam was full of praise for Asif after he smashed four sixes in the penultimate over to help Pakistan achieve a five-wicket win over Afghanistan in the Twenty20 World Cup in Dubai.

“I was very confident Asif would get us out of any trouble we find ourselves in,” Babar said, whose team tops Group 2 with six points in three matches.

“Asif’s hitting was clean, and that’s why we selected him.”

Nabi was equally appreciative of Asif’s hitting.

“We didn’t start really well, but the total on the board was decent but maybe not enough, only because of Asif,” Nabi said.

With Pakistan needing 24 runs off the final two overs, Asif lifted paceman Karim Janat´s first, third, fifth, and sixth balls over the boundary to help Pakistan overhaul a tricky 148-run target.

Asif finished with 25 off just seven balls with four sixes and a single, leaving Janat and all the other Afghan players frustrated.

Afghanistan scored a fighting 147-6 in their 20 overs with Gulbadin Naib and skipper Mohammad Nabi each scoring 35.

Former Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh was also all praises for batter Asif Ali.

Taking to Twitter, Sindh said Asif Ali showed a lot of confidence by refusing the single on the last ball and finishing it in style by hitting those four big 6 in the next over.

“… clean and powerful hitter.”



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