In their World Cup semifinal match at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Wednesday, Pakistan defeated New Zealand by seven wickets, barely making a mistake during the entire match.
With a decisive seven-wicket victory over New Zealand, a revitalized Pakistan raised their level of play when it meant the most and advanced to the T20 World Cup final.
Babar Azam lost the toss and had to field first when he’d have preferred to bat, giving them a terrible start to the day. Then, their renowned pacer Shaheen Afridi was smashed for a four on the first delivery of the over. But after that, it was all about Pakistan.
After limiting New Zealand to 152 for 4 on a sluggish SCG surface, Pakistan easily chased down the mark, riding on captain Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan’s aggressive fifty-plus scores to secure their berth in the final after 13 years.
It was anticipated that the out-of-shape duo of Babar and Mohammad Rizwan may have trouble. As the Pakistani openers completely demolished the Kiwi pacers, those worries were swiftly allayed.
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Both of the star openers finally found their game and scored half century. The two did not stay to the end, but their body of effort was sufficient to allow later hitters to easily lead the team to victory.
The Kiwis came in a distant second as Babar and Co. excelled in all areas, including bowling, fielding, and even decision-making.
The T20 World Cup final will mark Pakistan’s third appearance.
They will face either England or India in the World Cup final as their reward on Sunday. If it turns out to be the former, it would keep them on pace to follow the example set by their successful World Cup run from thirty years ago, when they came back from the brink to defeat the Kiwis in the semifinals and England in the championship game.
A century opening stand from Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan eased Pakistan into their third #T20WorldCup finals 💪#NZvPAK Report 👇https://t.co/PTw3M216dW
— T20 World Cup (@T20WorldCup) November 9, 2022
Pakistan will play the final on Friday.
Team Netherlands congratulated Pakistan on its victory.
🟠First finalist @TheRealPCB. Great win, good cricket, lovely to watch! #wewinnenveelmetsport #teamnl #joinourjourney #fairtree #t20worldcup #icc #HaveANiceDay
Photo credit ICC/Getty images pic.twitter.com/nnCnZEIDEy
— Cricket🏏Netherlands (@KNCBcricket) November 9, 2022