- Pakistan beat New Zealand by five wickets with eight balls to spare.
- Haris Rauf takes career-best 4-22 to restrict New Zealand to 134-8.
- PM Imran Khan, Opposition leaders, masses laud team’s performance.
Pakistanis took to Twitter late Tuesday to celebrate the Men In Green’s victory against New Zealand, which marked the Green Shirts’ second straight win in the Super 12s of the T20 World Cup.
Haris Rauf took a career-best 4-22 to restrict New Zealand to 134-8 in their 20 overs, with Pakistan chasing down the target with eight balls to spare.
Pakistan came into after beating arch-rivals India in their opening game on Sunday.
The Prime Minister’s Office took to Twitter to congratulate the team for their splendid performance.
Federal Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry said the victory proved that success lies in teamwork.
PML-N President and Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif had a simple message of encouragement for the cricket team: “Keep making us proud.”
PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto also lauded the team’s performance.
Here’s how others reacted:
Boosted by their brilliant performance in the 10-wicket rout of arch-rivals India on Sunday, Rauf inspired the 2009 champions to victory in front of a boisterous Sharjah crowd mainly comprised of Pakistani expats.
Devon Conway and Daryl Mitchell both scored 27 for New Zealand, while skipper Kane Williamson made a laborious 25 off 26 balls as New Zealand were held to a below-par 134-8.
Veteran Shoaib Malik (27) and Asif Ali (26) came together with Pakistan wobbling at 87-5 and led the team to their target in 18.4 overs.
Pakistan had lost skipper Babar Azam to Tim Southee — bowled for nine in the sixth over — as the paceman took his 100th wicket in his 84th T20 international.
He is only the third bowler behind Bangladesh´s Shakib Al Hasan (117 in 92 T20Is) and Sri Lankan Lasith Malinga (107 in 84) to take 100 or more wickets in the format.
Leg-spinner Ish Sodhi trapped both Fakhar Zaman (11) and Mohammad Rizwan leg-before to leave Pakistan reeling at 69-4.
In between those two dismissals, Conway produced a brilliant diving catch at wide long-off to dismiss Mohammad Hafeez who attempted to lift spinner Mitchell Santner out of the ground.
When Imad Wasim fell for 11, Pakistan still needed 47 off 31 deliveries.
It was left to Asif — maligned for his continuous failures — to hit two sixes off Southee in the 17th over to bring down the target to 24 off the last three.
Malik reduced that to nine in two overs by hitting a four and a six off Santner.
Asif then smacked Boult for six before hitting the winning runs.