Pakistan U-19 overcome AUS and NZ in the Tri Nation Tournament
Christian Leopard’s single-handed show of a 61-ball hundred went in vain as New Zealand Under-19s lost to Pakistan Under-19s by 31 runs in Dubai. New Zealand were 206 for 7 in their chase of 280 before Leopard fell for 116 and they eventually ran out of batsmen, to be bowled out for 248. Pakistan, with their second straight win, jumped from the bottom of the table to finish on top as all three teams – including Australia – have two wins each from four matches and Pakistan edged ahead on net run rate.
New Zealand’s chase was rocked early by leg spinner Hasan Mohsin who struck thrice in his first two overs to reduce the score to 11 for 3. No. 3 Finn Allen stalled a middle-order collapse with Josh Clarkson and Aniket Parikh but a double-blow from Saif Ali dented them further to 67 for 5 in the 14th over. It was a solo Leopard chase from there. He started with three sixes within seven balls in the beginning and brought up his fifty off 27 balls by smashing Arsal Sheikh for two sixes and two fours in the 22nd over.
He brought the required run rate down from over six per over to under 4.50 per over when he got out in 34th over after clobbering 12 fours and seven sixes, and No. 10 Felix Murray gave a late surge with three fours and a six but Shadab Khan finished things off in the 46th over. Mohsin finished with 3 for 25.
Earlier, Pakistan were asked to bat and were led until the 26th over by captain and opener Gauhar Hafeez’s 58. Two wickets from Murray brought them down to 110 for 4 before Shadab Khan (48) and Saif Badar (99*) took them towards 200 and Badar’s 73-ball knock with five fours and six sixes charged them to 279 for 9 with only one more double-digit scores from the last five batsmen. Pakistan scored 58 runs in the last five overs.