Pakistan batsman Shoaib Malik played a superb knock under pressure and steered his team to a three-wicket win against Afghanistan in a nail-biting thriller in Abu Dhabi on Friday. Malik brought in all his experience while chasing a tricky target of 258 runs. As wickets kept tumbling at the other end, Malik, during his unbeaten 51-run knock, kept his composure. Lauding Malik’s gritty knock, former Pakistan fast bowler Wasim Akram compared his approach to the game with one of the best finishers of the game, Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
“Experience has no substitute... Shoaib Malik proved it against a spirited Afghanistan .Did a Dhoni like finish ... when Malik faced a bowler, he had no expression on his face and that frustrates a bowler because he doesn’t know what to expect... wonderful knock @realshoaibmalik,” Akram wrote on his Twitter handle.
Experience has no substitute... Shoaib Malik proved it against a spirited Afghanistan .Did a Dhoni like finish ... when Malik faced a bowler, he had no expression on his face and that frustrates a bowler becos he doesn't know what to expect... wonderful knock @realshoaibmalik— Wasim Akram (@wasimakramlive) September 22, 2018
Chasing a target of 258 in the Super Four encounter against Afghanistan, Pakistan got off to an awful start, losing opener Fakhar Zaman in the first over. After Zaman’s wicket, Imam-ul-Haq and Babar Azam stitched a crucial 154-run partnership for the third wicket. But Afghanistan bowlers bounced back strongly and picked wickets at regular intervals after the mammoth partnership between Imam and Babar.
As wicket kept tumbling at the other end, Malik stayed solid throughout his innings and took Pakistan across the line in the final over.
Malik has played 3 matches in the tournament so far, scoring 103 runs at an average of 103.00.
The former India captain Dhoni, who is known for his calm and composed demeanour on the field, has scored 33 runs in three matches at an average of 16.50.