Asia Cup 2018: Shoaib Malik consoles a desolated Aftab Alam after a thrilling game
Afghanistan gave their best shot against the Mighty Pakistani outfit, but eventually, the experience of Shoaib Malik had to count and it did big time.
Updated - Sep 22, 2018 12:48 pm
Cricket is a game of fine margins and whilst it can give an abundance of joy to one side, it can leave another side utterly bewildered and desolated. Afghanistan gave it their best shot against the mighty Pakistani outfit but eventually, the experience of Shoaib Malik had to count and it did big time.
Batting first, Afghanistan registered 257 runs thanks to a couple of excellent knocks from skipper Asghar Afghan and Hashmatullah Shahidi. The latter fell three runs shy of a maiden ODI hundred, but his exploits in the death overs ensured his side crossed the 250-mark and posted a competitive total.
In reply, Babar Azam and Imam-ul-Haq had some consolidation to do after Fakhar Zaman was dismissed for a duck in the very first over. The duo did a fantastic job to frustrate the Afghans by playing simple and orthodox cricket, which involved minimal risks.
A fantastic comeback which wasn’t good enough
Babar and Imam added 154 runs for the second wicket and it seemed like the game was done and dusted. However, some quick wickets brought Afghanistan back in the game and they held the upper hand in the final few overs. But Shoaib Malik’s unbeaten 51 off 43 balls saw them over the line and left the opponents in tears.
Aftab Alam, who was handed the responsibility to bowl the final over, managed to find the blockhole off his first ball. But with 10 runs needed off 5 balls, he bowled two bad deliveries which were enough for the veteran to accumulate the required runs. Alam was inconsolable as Afghanistan squandered a great chance to defeat the 1992 World Champions.
But cricket, at the end of the day, is a gentleman’s game and Shoaib Malik once again proved himself to be one of its finest ambassadors. He went over to console Aftab, who was down on the floor in tears. Hasan Ali too joined his senior partner and his moving gesture won him a lot of compliments on social media.
Here’s the video of the incident.
— Ammara Awan (@Ammaraa1782) September 21, 2018