Afridi heroics in vain, Aussies win again

Associated Press

Hobart, January 16:

New opening combination of Michael Clarke and Simon Katich put on 107 runs in 105 balls on Sunday to lead Australia to a four-wicket win over Pakistan in a tri-series limited-overs match.

Set a revised target of 253 in 45 overs after a 40-minute rain delay, Australia reached 253-6 with Darren Lehmann on 49 not out and Brad Hogg on three. Pakistan scored 272-7 in its 50 overs.

Katich was out for 38, but Clarke went on to post 97 from 96 balls with 12 fours and a six. He was out — caught in the deep off the bowling of Mohammad Hafeez — trying to bring up his century with a boundary over mid-wicket. The Australians won with 12 balls to spare after the cheap dismissals of Ricky Ponting (6), Damien Martyn (11) and Andrew Symonds for a duck.Abdul Razzaq led Pakistan’s bowlers with 2-41. The Australian lineup contained two enforced changes, due to injuries, from the team which beat West Indies by 116 runs in the series opener last Friday.

Wicketkeeper Adam Gilchrist (left knee) was replaced by Brad Haddin, while Glenn McGrath came back for Jason Gillespie (right calf muscle). Katich returned to fill Gilchrist’s spot atop the Australian batting order. Pakistan picked up a bonus point to sit in second place in the standings behind Australia’s 11. The West Indies have no points and are in third place. Earlier, Shahid Afridi blazed an unbeaten 56 off 26 balls to guide Pakistan to its total. Afridi raised his 50 off 24 balls and belted four sixes — including two in consecutive balls from McGrath — and four boundaries as Pakistan put on 62 runs in the last five overs. Salman Butt scored 61 at the top of the order and skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq returned to form with 68 from 64 balls, his first half century on the Australian tour. McGrath took 1-17 in his first seven overs but conceded 37 in his last three against the batting onslaught led by Afridi. Michael Kasprowicz was the best of the Australian bowlers with 2-38. Pakistan will take on West Indies in Brisbane on Wednesday.



S Butt c Lehmann b Hogg 61

K Akmal c Clarke b McGrath 5

M Hafeez c Hogg b Lee 0

S Malik lbw b Symonds 31

Inzamam lbw b Kasprowicz 68

Y Youhana c Martyn b Kasprowicz 30

A Razzaq c Clark b McGrath 12

S Afridi not out 56

A Mahmood not out 3

Extras: 6 (1b, 4w, 1nb)

Total: 272/7 (50 overs)

Fall of Wickets: 1-15, 2-30, 3-83, 4-117, 5-191, 6 -204, 7-251

Australia Bowling: G McGrath 10-2-54-2, B Lee 10-0-66-1, M Kasprowicz 9-0-38-2, A Symonds 9-0-55-1, B Hogg 7-0-28-1, D Lehman 5-0-30-0

Australia :

M Clarke c Naved b Hafeez 97

M Katich b Mahmood 38

R Ponting c Akmal b Afridi 6

D Martyn b Razzaq 11

D Lehmann not out 49

A Symonds b Razzaq 0

B Haddin c Hafeez b Naved 30

B Hogg not out 3

Extras: 19 (5lb, 6w, 8nb)

Total: 253/6 (43 ove rs)

Fall of Wickets: 1-107, 2-118, 3-141, 4-184, 5-186, 6-243

Pakistan Bowling: S Akhtar 8-0-54-0, R Naved 8-0-60-1, A Mahmood 6-0-33-1, S Afridi 9-0-43-1, A Razzaq 8-0-41-2, M Hafeez 4-0-17-1

Result: Australia won by four wickets (Revised target for Australia 253 from 45 overs).