Pakistan defeated Hong Kong by 64 runs in the twenty20 clash in Dubai on Monday
Chasing 168 for victory, Mark Chapman scored a 39-ball half century and Anshuman Rath contributed 18 to anchor the Hong Kong innings, but a batting collapse led to the side being dismissed for 103 runs in 17.1 overs.
Pakistan may have momentarily regretted electing to bat, with opener Ahmed Shehzad dismissed on his first ball to leave the side one wicket for no runs in the first over. However, Rafatullah Mohmand (25) and number three Sohaib Maqsood (25) steadied the ship, before Mohammad Rizwan starred with an unbeaten 38-ball 55.
Aamer Yamin added 27 more, while number eight Anwar Ali struck 16 from only eight deliveries to help boost Pakistan’s run rate in the final overs. Babar Hayat took a screaming catch to dismiss Anwir on the last ball of the innings, a catch that was also Haseeb Amjad’s third wicket for the day. Haseeb finished the pick of the Hong Kong bowlers with three for 38, while Anshuman Rath claimed two for 30, and Tanwir Afzal and Aizaz Khan took one apiece.
In reply, Hong Kong lost two early wickets and had 11 runs on the board before vice captain Mark Chapman came to the crease. Chapman put on a 52-run partnership with opener Anshuman Rath, who added a vital 18 runs from 19 deliveries. However, when Anshuman was run out in the 10th over, it sparked a batting collapse that saw Hong Kong fall from 63 for three to 103 all out in 7.4 overs.
Chapman top scored for Hong Kong, reaching his 50 with a four. However, he was caught off the following delivery. The Hong Kong tail failed to way, with Waqas Khan (10) the only other player to make it to double figures.
Vice captain Chapman remained philosophical after the defeat: “It was definitely a learning experience for us to play a Full Member nation. They are guys that a lot of our team know, some of them they know personally. To play a true professional side was a great experience; we lost, but we’ll learn from that, we’ll regroup and we’ll be better for it.”
The 21-year old believes that Hong Kong didn’t make the most of its strong start. “We started really well, in the first three overs. We took wickets throughout the innings and we pegged them back. We probably let a couple of chances slip, which meant that they got probably 20 more runs than we were looking to restrict them to, but it was still a really competitive total, and we just didn’t do it with the bat today, unfortunately.”
“It’s great to get this sort of experience, and to perform against some of the best guys in the world is really pleasing. It’s something I will take a lot of confidence from.”
Coach Simon Cook said his side had missed opportunities in the game despite a promising start: “A wicket in the first over gets the innings going and gets momentum going in your direction straight away. From then on I think we actually controlled the game quite nicely up until the 15th over, and then it just started slipping away a little bit.”
He continued: “The result slightly disappointing in a way. The game follows a similar track to the England game that we had earlier on in this tour, in that we competed really, really well in phases in this game. With the ball first up, we did very well and were looking at one point at restricting them to 140 to 145. That mark should have been a really good effort on this pitch, but we missed a stumping and didn’t take a catch, which probably we should have done. That allowed them to get away 20 to 30 more than actually they should have got on this pitch.”