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Pakistan and India Dominate

By Parvez Fatteh, Founder of http://sportingummah.com, sports@muslimobserver.com


Pakistan’s captain Shahid Afridi celebrates after taking the wicket of Kenya’s Steve Tikolo during their ICC Cricket World Cup group A match in Hambantota, south of Colombo, February 23, 2011.

REUTERS/Andrew Caballero-Reynolds

The Pakistani cricket team shot out of the starting gate of the 2011 ICC World Cup this week in fine fashion by bombarding the Kenyan team by 205 runs. Captain Shahid Afridi took five wickets and Umar Akmal was one of four Pakistanis to drive in 50 or more runs as part of an all around demolition. Pakistan put up an intimidating 317 runs on 7 wickets in the first innings. Kenya found that total too intimidating to even consider surmounting and were only able to put up a paltry 112 runs in 33.1 overs, as they were no match for the spin of the Pakistani bowlers.

The Man of the Match was Umar Akmal, who was responsible for 71 runs on 52 balls. Misbah-ul-Haq was close behind with 65 runs for the Pakistani batsmen, followed by Umar’s older brother Kamran Akmal with 55 runs and Younis Khan with an even half-century. This was only the ninth time in World Cup history that four or more batsmen on one team scored half-centuries. Kenya also set a record, but a dubious one, as they equaled the highest number of wide balls bowled in a one-day innings with 37, last done by the West Indies in 1989 against Pakistan.

“It was a good start but I think the next game (against Sri Lanka) is very important for us. I think it will become harder. I think we learned a lot of things from here,” Afridi told Yahoo Sports. Pakistan next take on Sri Lanka, winners against Canada in their first match, on Saturday, but it will be a tall order as the match will take place in Colombo.

India put in a fairly dominating performance themselves in beating Bangladesh by 87 runs in the opening match of the tournament. And they were led on the bowling side by a trio of Muslim hurlers. Zaheer Khan bowled 10 overs and bagged two wickets. Munaf Patel was even more dominant as he took four wickets. Yusuf Khan did his part by contributing one wicket in his eight overs of work. India next take on England in a colonial grudge match.


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