Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Pakistan ease to warm-up victory

Pakistan were rarely in trouble as they eased to an 89-run victory against Bangladesh in a World Cup warm-up game in Dhaka. Pakistan were thankful to centuries from Ahmed Shehzad and Misbah-ul-Haq as they set the Tigers an intimidating 286 to win. World Cup co-hosts Bangladesh never looked like reaching the target and fell 89 runs short in their replay.

Pakistan chose to bat first, with teenage opener Shehzad showing why he is so highly thought of on the sub-continent. Despite being dropped twice on his way to his century, Shehzad batted beautifully in his innings of 103 from 120 deliveries. Vice-captain Misbah was the only other Pakistan batsman to shine with his 100 coming at a run-a-ball, with four sixes in his confident innings. The most up to date ICC Cricket World Cup betting suggests these two players will be key to their side's chances in the tournament.

Bangladesh's captain Shakib Al Hasan was once again his side's star bowler with his 3-49, Rubel Hossain weighed in with three wickets himself, although the fast bowler was more expensive as he went for 73 in his ten overs.

The Tigers run chase was in trouble from the start with Tamin Iqbal clean bowled by Abdul Razzaq from the first ball of the innings. Imrul Kayes and Junaid Siddique steadied the ship with 71 for the second wicket before a collapse saw them crash to 196 all out with eight overs left. Razzaq did most of the damage with his 3-31 and was ably assisted by Mohammad Hafeez and Abdur Rehman who picked up two wickets apiece.

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