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Match Reports,07 July 2015

Leie, Phangiso spin South Africa home

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Pakistan edge out Australia in thriller

Pakistan beat Australia in Super Over to take three-match Twenty20 International series 2-0

Pakistan edge out Australia in thriller - Cricket News
Umar Akmal rushes towards the Pakistan dugout after scoring the winning runs.
Pakistan needed a Super over to defeat Australia following a dramatic tie in the second T20I in Dubai. 

In a match that had it all Umar Akmal took a single off the last ball to surpass Australia's score of 11 in the additional overs required after 20 apiece failed to separate them. 

Australia batted first in the Super over with Umar Gul bowling as full as possible to restrict the Australians to four from the first three balls. A boundary to Warner followed by a wide boosted the batting team before the left-hander top-edged a catch to long-off. Aussie skipper George Bailey hit two off the last ball to give Pakistan a victory target of 12. 

Pat Cummins - who nearly won the contest with the bat in the 20-over game - was then charged with the task of restricting the Pakistani batting trio. Akmal took first strike and hit a boundary off the second ball while Abdul Razzaq did the same with the fourth to leave three needed from the final two deliveries. Another single for Razzaq was followed by a wide before Akmal hit to cover for the winning run. 

Warner had earlier got Australia's pursuit of 152 off to a flying start with 31 off 19 balls to help his side to 38 off the opening four overs. 

Saeed Ajmal then struck in his first over when he bowled the left-hander with a delivery that left the batsman and hit his off-stump. The off-spinner was removed from the attack after one over but returned in the 11th to claim the second wicket of the innings. Shane Watson attempted to sweep the slow bowler but was struck on the pads and adjudged leg before wicket for 33. 

Panic set in for the batting side as Cameron White set off for a run before deciding against the single, only to be short of his crease when Umar Akmal threw down the stumps as he tried to return to his crease. 

Australia entered the last five overs needing 43 runs but then suffered the loss of both Hussey brothers in successive overs. Michael Hussey (23) miscued a pull off Gul to mid-off before sibling David was bowled by Sohail Tanvir for 1. 

Bailey then took it upon himself to seize back the initiative that had been moving remorselessly in Pakistan's favour. The right-hander hit a six off the ever-frugal Ajmal's (2-20) last ball to leave 21 required from the last 12 deliveries. Bailey then hit consecutive boundaries in the penultimate over from Gul but the batting team's nerves continued to get the better off them when they suffered another run out. 

Matthew Wade was dismissed by a direct hit from substitute fielder Yasir Arafat at third man to leave 10 needed from the last over, bowled by Razzaq. The experienced all-rounder removed the dangerous Bailey (42 off 27 balls) with his first ball when a top-edged pull found Arafat at midwicket. Australia's eighth-wicket pair of Dan Christian and Cummins only managed singles from the next three deliveries before the latter thumped a six over wide long-on to bring the scores level. 

Needing one from the last ball the stage looked set for Cummins to finish the game off, only to get a leading edge to mid-off where Imran Nazir held his nerve.  

Pakistan made 151-4 from their 20 overs after winning the toss, thanks to useful contributions from Mohammad Hafeez (45), Nasir Jamshed (45) and Kamran Akmal (43 not out). 

Mitchell Starc picked up a wicket with his second delivery on his T20I debut to give Australia early success when he bowled Nazir without scoring in the second over. 

Hafeez and Jamshed then put on 76 for the second wicket before the latter fell victim to a stunning piece of fielding. Jamshed chipped over Christian at mid-off who back-pedalled and pulled off a spectacular diving catch with his left hand. 

Kamran Akmal's 26-ball innings ensured Pakistan finished their innings with some momentum as they looked to build on their emphatic victory in the first T20I at the same venue on Wednesday. 

Pakistan take an unassailable 2-0 lead into the third and final T20I on Sunday at the same venue.

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