Pakistan defeated Afghanistan by 24 runs in their Group ‘C’ to make it to the quarter-finals of the ICC Under-19 World Cup at the Brian Lara Stadium in Trinidad.
Chasing a 240-run target, Afghanistan were restricted to 215-9 in their quota of 50 overs as Pakistan bowlers and fielders produced an outstanding performance to defend their 239-9.
Pacer Awais Ali, who took six wickets in Pakistan’s opening fixture against Zimbabwe, produced another brilliant bowling performance that yielded him figures of 3-36 in nine overs.
Captain Qasim Akram took 2-39 while Player-of-the-match Maaz Sadaqat followed his batting heroics with a crucial wicket. Pakistan fielders produced three run-outs with opener Bilal Sayedi top-scored for Afghanistan with 42.
Having opted to bat, Pakistan lost Haseebullah — a centurion from the previous game — early but Mohammad Shehzad (43) added 60 runs for the second wicket with Abdul Faseeh (68), who was involved in a 73-run stand with Qasim (38) before Maaz’s unbeaten 42 provided them with late impetus.
Pakistan will play Papua New Guinea in their last group match on Saturday.