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Melbourne ODI: Pakistan beat Australia on their home soil after 12 years

MELBOURNE: Pakistan beat Australia by six wickets in the second one-day international at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Sunday, their first ODI win on Australian soil for 12 years.

After Australian captain Steve Smith won the toss and chose to bat, Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Amir took 3-47 to help restrict the home side to 220 all out.

Pakistan captain Mohammad Hafeez scored 72 and Shoaib Malik 42 not out as the visitors passed the Australian total with 2.2 overs to spare.

Each player of the team entered into double figures (Hafeez 72, Sharjeel 29, Babar Azam 34, Asad Shafiq 13, Shoaib Malik 42, Umer Akmal 18) and played their part.

Australian captain Steven Smith during the post-match talk said: “We went a little bit too hard with the bat. Ordinary with the bat in first two games, aside from Wade’s hundred…

“…Need to build partnerships, haven’t done that in the past two games. We’ve been 3 or 4 down when the spinners came on, we haven’t been able to play naturally against them. Was always going to be tough, tried as hard as we can. we were 40 runs short, was a 260 wicket. Outplayed by Pakistan.”

Hafeez, who was also named Man of the Match, said “The boys did a great job, our bowlers did a great job, they got wickets at the right times. We love them, and they love us a lot (the crowd). This is the way to move forward, we have everything to win the series. Missed an opportunity in the last game.”

Pakistan’s opening bowlers Mohammad Amir and Junaid Khan were also impressive early on. Junaid, who was brought in place of Wahab Riaz, had two close lbw appeals against the dangerous David Warner turned down before he induced an edge to wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan on 16.

Junaid soon added the scalp of Usman Khawaja when he edged to first slip Sharjeel Khan who took a fine catch low to his left.

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Australia promoted allrounder Mitchell Marsh up the order but the experiment failed as he scooped the first ball he faced from Amir to Imad Wasim at cover to leave the home side 41 for three.

Travis Head then joined Steve Smith in the middle and hit five boundaries on his way to 29 before he edged Hasan Ali to Rizwan with Australia at 86 for four.

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Glenn Maxwell had made 23 when he charged left-arm spinner Imad and was bowled to leave the home side 128 for five after 26 overs. With all batsmen finding it hard to score quickly, Smith brought up a hard-fought 50 from 91 balls with only two boundaries and no sixes.

He looked to accelerate with eight overs to go but on 60 he got an inside edge on to his pads and then stumps to give Imad his second wicket.

Matthew Wade was seventh to fall six runs later on 199, bowled by Shoaib Malik for 35 before Junaid ran out a stranded Mitchell Starc off his own bowling.

Pat Cummins was caught behind after trying to hook Amir and James Faulkner skied a ball to point in Amir’s next over.

Australia: David Warner, Travis Head, Steve Smith (capt), Usman Khawaja, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Matthew Wade, James Faulkner, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood

Pakistan: Sharjeel Khan, Mohammad Hafeez (capt), Babar Azam, Asad Shafiq, Shoaib Malik, Umar Akmal, Mohammad Rizwan, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, Junaid Khan

Umpires – Chris Gaffaney (NZL) and Paul Wilson (AUS)

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