Australia beat Pakistan by 9 wickets in the 1st ODI. Here is the full scorecard and commentary.
Mathew Wade performed a rescuing operation for Australia with his maiden ODI hundred after Pakistan struck at regular intervals until 78 for 5 when Wade came in. Defeat might have predicted by many pundits after Azhar Ali retired hurt which sucked out most of the momentum of the Pakistan innings. Azhar might be potential danger of not playing for the remaining 4 ODIs. When Azhar did come back at number 6 he did no favours to Pakistan and was swiftly back in the clubhouse.
Brisbane had a hot and humid atmosphere which also affected the Australian team as Billy Stanlake looked in distress and could not finish his full quota of overs on his ODI debut. Fortunately, Steven Smith had many other weapons at his disposal which cleaned up Pakistan with out a lot of fuss. Regular wickets by Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and James Faulkner meant that Pakistan were always going to be short of the target. With Azhar injured and Sarfaraz Ahmed back home, Mohammed Hafeez will probably be in line for the leadership.
The day began much better than it ended for Pakistan. Mohammed Amir was on a hattrick with the wickets of David Warner and Steven Smith and the debutante Chris Lynn and Travis Head did not go further than cameos and Australia were stumbling on 67 for 4. Glen Maxwell made a sensible 60 but left Mathew Wade unaccompanied with the tale for him to get to his maiden ODI century and and 3rd international century.
Mohammed Hafeez was brought into the attack in the 2nd over with his new refined action. He contributed to keep the openers, Travis Head and David Warner, quiet before Amir bowled the latest in-swinger to hit the wood-works of Warner then an out-swinger to make Smith edge one to Mohammed Rizwan.
Chris Lynn then arrived for his Australian debut and smashed Hasan Ali over mid wicket but then did not pick a premature slower ball and was caught and bowled. Head hit some exquisite shots through the off and leg side but then hit one drive too many to Imad Wasim and was brilliantly caught by Rizwan; another fine catch by him.
Imad claimed another wicket of the hesitant Mitch Marsh but then came in the big gun of the game and ready to show his worth in the team after a not so successful summer. He started with the support of the extravagant Maxwell but when he perished Wade had to fight fatigue with the tale-enders and did a find job of it. Wade added 42 with Cummins and 23 with Starc and a restless 33 with with the debutante Stanlake.
Wade then proved his worth behind the stumps with some delightful catches to aid in the failed Pakistani run chase. He earned man of the match and the respect of many people by fighting the heat.
As Pakistan’s batting started the pressure started to build as well. A series of mistimed shots from Sharjeel Khan and Azhar Ali resulted in a quite dull start. After Azhar’s injury break, Sharjeel smashed Faulkner to mid-on and then Hafeez edged one to Wade to make it 47 for 2.
An off-cutter bouncer from Starc was the downfall of Umar Akmal and a faster one from Pat Cummins shut down the batting machine of Babar Azam as he edged one to Smith at the slips. Mohammed Rizwan did not continue his wicket keeping form into his batting and was caught with a juggle by Mitch Marsh. The wicket of Mohammed Nawaz was a result of a in-swinger smashing into off stump. The tale was cleaned up swiftly and could not show the heroics of the test series.
The Cornered Tiger