Twitter Reactions: Hafeez, Sarfaraz, Babar and bowlers take Pakistan to the much-awaited win in Nottingham

Twitter Reactions: Hafeez, Sarfaraz, Babar and bowlers take Pakistan to the much-awaited win in Nottingham

Joe Root and Jos Buttler's knocks went in vain.

Mohammad Amir
Mohammad Amir. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

Before their match against England, Pakistan was in dire straits after losing a string of games in the ODI format. Furthermore, Sarfaraz Ahmed and Co lost their opening match against Pakistan by seven wickets. The game at the Trent Bridge in Nottingham was a witness to several twists and turns. In the end, Pakistan emerged triumphant by 14 runs to win their first One-Dayer after 12 matches.

Mohammad Hafeez top scores for the Men in Green

On a strip that was used for the world-record game last year, England elected to field first after winning the toss. Pakistan dropped Imad Wasim and Haris Sohail and roped in Shoaib Malik and Asif Ali. Fakhar Zaman and Imam-ul-Haq made a decent start, putting forth a stand of 82 runs in 14.1 overs. Moeen Ali gave England their first breakthrough, dismissing Fakhar, who got a patient 36 with six boundaries.

Imam scored a 58-ball 44 before perishing to Moeen. Chris Woakes took a decent running catch in the deep. Babar Azam and Mohammad Hafeez steadied the ship and put on a partnership of 88 runs for the third wicket. Babar notched his fifty in 50 balls and went on to score 63 after which he became Moeen’s third victim. Following his dismissal, Hafeez carried on the good work and got his fifty in 39 deliveries.

The right-hander didn’t slow down anytime and racked up 84 runs off 62 balls with eight fours and a couple of sixes. Mark Wood accounted for his wicket in the 43rd over. Skipper Sarfaraz also came to the party and scored 55 off 44 with five fours. Asif perished after getting 14. Hasan Ali and Shadab Khan played cameos of 10 each to propel Pakistan to a huge 348, their second highest total in the World Cup.

Pakistan pacers rise to the occasion

Like South Africa, Pakistan also introduced a leg-spinner, Shadab, in the first over and it paid dividends. The tweaker trapped Jason Roy in front in his second over though. The batsman also ended up wasting a DRS review. Jonny Bairstow looked scratchy in his knock of 32 before being dismissed by Wahab Riaz. Eoin Morgan couldn’t survive the heat and was castled by Hafeez. Then Malik pinned Ben Stokes.

With 231 runs needed, Joe Root and Jos Buttler had a massive task ahead of them. Root got to his half-century in 47 and then notched a ton off 97 deliveries to take England closer. Buttler was the more attacking partner, having got to his fifty off 34 balls. The duo put on 130 runs for the fifth wicket to bring England back into the game. Shadab gave Pakistan the next breakthrough, dismissing Root for 107.

The hosts required a significant 91 runs in the last 10 overs with Moeen Ali and Buttler in the middle. Under severe pressure, Buttler roared to a century off 75 balls with a drive through the covers. However, Mohammad Amir removed the big fish in the 45th over with a well-disguised slower delivery. Wahab Riaz got rid of an-of-form Moeen and Chris Woakes to seal the fate of the encounter.

Here is how Twitter reacted to the close contest in Nottingham