Pakistan clinch thrilling final-over win over Afghanistan
Pakistan beat Afghanistan by one wicket in a thrilling second ODI to win the three-match series in Hambantota, Sri Lanka, on Thursday.
Chasing 301 for a series-clinching win, Pakistan reached their destination with one ball to spare, riding on Imam-ul-Haq's 105-ball 91.
In the death overs of the second innings that was filled with one dramatic moment after another, Pakistan managed to hold their nerve to win the second ODI by the barest of margins – with a ball and a wicket to spare.
Naseem Shah was once again the tormentor for Afghanistan as he snatched away what could have been their maiden ODI win against Pakistan.
The 20-year-old miscued a boundary off fast bowler Fazalhaq Farooqi and ran jubilantly towards the dressing room as Pakistan scored 11 off the final over to finish with 302-9 in 49.5 overs.
The victory gave Pakistan an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series with the last game in Colombo on Saturday.
Earlier, swashbuckling opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz hit a career-best 151 to lead Afghanistan to 300-5.
The 21-year-old scored an aggressive run-a-ball century and shared an opening stand of 227 with Ibrahim Zadran, who scored a 101-ball 80, after Afghanistan won the toss and batted.
Afghanistan needed a win to level the three-match series after losing the first match by 142 runs, and Gurbaz knocked 14 boundaries and three sixes against a world-class attack that had reduced them to 59 all out on Tuesday.
Gurbaz's previous best was 145 against Bangladesh in Chattogram last month.
Zadran also hit out brilliantly, knocking six boundaries and two sixes.
Spinner Usama Mir broke the opening stand in the 40th over when he had Zadran caught at long off, while lanky pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi dismissed Gurbaz caught behind in the 45th over.
Shaheen also had Rashid Khan out for two to finish with 2-58.
Mohammad Nabi made a run-a-ball 29 before he was caught off Naseem Shah as Afghanistan piled up 73 runs in the last ten overs.
Fast bowler Haris Rauf, who picked up a career-best 5-18 in the first match, went for 48 in seven overs without success.
Rahmanullah Gurbaz c Mohammad Rizwan b Shaheen Afridi 151
Ibrahim Zadran c Iftikhar Ahmed b Usama Mir 80
Mohammad Nabi c Imam ul-Haq b Naseem Shah 29
Rashid Khan lbw Shaheen Afridi 2
Shahidullah Kamal Run Out Shaheen Afridi 1
Hashmatullah Shahidi Not Out 15
Abdul Rahman Not Out 4
Extras 0b 11lb 2nb 0pen 5w 18
Total (50.0 overs) 300-5
Fall of Wickets : 1-227 Zadran, 2-256 Gurbaz, 3-260 Khan, 4-270 Kamal, 5-294 Nabi
Did Not Bat : Hassan, Khil, Ur Rahman, Farooqi
Bowling Ov Md Rn Wk Econ Ex
Shaheen Afridi 10 0 58 2 5.80 1nb
Naseem Shah 9 0 45 1 5.00 3w 1nb
Haris Rauf 7 0 48 0 6.86
Shadab Khan 10 0 53 0 5.30 1w
Usama Mir 10 0 61 1 6.10 1w
Iftikhar Ahmed 4 0 24 0 6.00
Fakhar Zaman b Fazalhaq Farooqi 30
Imam ul-Haq c Riaz Hassan b Mujeeb Ur Rahman 91
Babar Azam c Hashmatullah Shahidi b Fazalhaq Farooqi 53
Mohammad Rizwan Run Out Hashmatullah Shahidi 2
Agha Salman c Rahmanullah Gurbaz b Mohammad Nabi 14
Usama Mir c Shahidullah Kamal b Mohammad Nabi 0
Iftikhar Ahmed c Mohammad Nabi b Abdul Rahman 17
Shadab Khan Run Out Fazalhaq Farooqi 48
Shaheen Afridi c Rashid Khan b Fazalhaq Farooqi 4
Naseem Shah Not Out 10
Haris Rauf Not Out 3
Extras 0b 6lb 0nb 0pen 24w 30
Total (49.5 overs) 302-9
Fall of Wickets : 1-52 Zaman, 2-170 Azam, 3-176 Rizwan, 4-208 Salman, 5-208 Mir, 6-211 ul-Haq, 7-258 Ahmed, 8-272 Afridi, 9-290 Khan
Bowling Ov Md Rn Wk Econ Ex
Fazalhaq Farooqi 9.5 0 69 3 7.02 2w
Mujeeb Ur Rahman 10 0 45 1 4.50 2w
Abdul Rahman 10 0 83 1 8.30 4w
Mohammad Nabi 10 0 46 2 4.60 2w
Rashid Khan 10 0 53 0 5.30 2w