West Indies v Pakistan T20Is - Men's
Hafeez's record spell helps Pakistan overcome Pooran blitz
Pakistan take a 1-0 series lead against West Indies after Mohammad Hafeez concedes just six runs from his four overs
1 August 2021, 07:24 AM AEST
Mohammad Hafeez produced one of the most economical spells in the history of T20 internationals as Pakistan survived a late blitz from Nicholas Pooran to beat West Indies by seven runs in Guyana and go 1-0 up in the four-match series.
Chasing 158 to win, the West Indies’ power-hitters couldn't mount a charge against the experienced off-spin of Hafeez, who conceded just six runs off his four overs and bowled Andre Fletcher with his second delivery.
The veteran bowled 19 dot balls and his spell also included a maiden to left-hander Evin Lewis.
Hafeez is the eighth man from a Test-playing nation to bowl a full spell in a T20 international at an economy rate of 1.50 runs an over, which is a record low for a player from a Full Member country.
The lowest economy rate in all T20 Internationals (20-over games featuring all 105 ICC members were granted full international status in 2019) is spell of 2-3 from four overs from Kuwait’s Mohammed Aslam against Saudi Arabia last year.
Pakistan, who'd been put into bat, had earlier scored 8-157 with captain Babar Azam (51) and Mohammad Rizwan (46) continuing to score heavily up front.
Nominating this as one of the top 5 catches of the summer! #WIvPAK #MissionMaroon pic.twitter.com/1nUrgWO2Aj— Windies Cricket (@windiescricket) July 31, 2021
Jason Holder grabbed 4-26 and Dwayne Bravo got the wickets of Mohammad Hafeez and Fakhar Zaman off successive deliveries as Pakistan lost six wickets for 23 runs in their last four overs.
Rizwan and Azam combined in a 67-run second wicket stand before Rizwan was run out in the 15th over.
Holder returned in the 17th over and Azam was out caught behind after a television referral, leaving the Pakistan captain to walk off the field in disbelief.
After Hafeez’s impressive spell, leg-spinner Shadab Khan (0-22) also gave away just one boundary that strangled the West Indies' run chase on a slow pitch.
Left-handed Pooran smashed six sixes and four boundaries but his unbeaten 62 off 33 balls could only carry the West Indies to 4-150.
Stand & Deliver! #WIvPAK #MissionMaroon Live Scorecard - https://t.co/eh7E6dW6cp pic.twitter.com/RuPk7vI1Xo— Windies Cricket (@windiescricket) July 31, 2021
"We were 10-15 runs short, but our bowlers bowled very well, and I think we should give them credit," Azam said.
"Hafeez showed his experience in the Powerplay and as captain it pleased me a lot."
When Ewin Lewis had to retire hurt due to cramps after scoring 35 off 33 balls, West Indies still needed 82 runs off the last six overs.
While Kieron Pollard couldn't find boundaries against the pace, Pooran timed the ball well and hit his sixes against fast bowlers Mohammad Wasim, Shaheen Afridi and Hasan Ali.
"I thought the way the bowlers bounced back shows we're consistent with the ball," Pollard said.
"We could have taken a few more singles. There are things we continue to look at, and it's all about improvement as the games go on. We were on the losing end today, but all hope isn't lost."
The first T20 was washed out in Barbados on Wednesday. Guyana hosts the remaining two T20s on Sunday and next Tuesday, followed by a two-Test series in Jamaica.