Pakistan down Bangladesh by 21 runs in T20I tri-series opener

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Mohammad Rizwan underlined why he will be a key weapon for Pakistan at the Twenty20 World Cup, top-scoring in a 21-run win over Bangladesh in Christchurch on Friday. Rizwan maintained his rich vein of form with an unbeaten 78 as Pakistan posted 167-5, before re-stricting their opponents to 146-8.

It was the opening match of a week-long tour-nament, which also includes hosts New Zealand. All three teams are using it to prepare for the T20 World Cup in Australia. The world’s top-ranked T20 batsman, Rizwan batted through the innings in cold conditions at Hagley Oval, tallying seven fours and two sixes in a chanceless 50-ball knock. It was the 30-year-old’s 21st half-century in the format, continuing his form from last month’s T20 series against England, when he compiled a series-leading 316 runs.

His average in the format of 54.34 stands alone among the top 150 run-scorers. The next best is India’s Virat Kohli (50.84). Rizwan’s best support on a tricky, two-paced wicket came from Shan Masood (31 off 22 balls), following an opening stand of 52 with captain Babar Azam (22 off 25) while Taskin Ahmed (2-25) was Bangladesh’s best bowler.—APP

 

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