During the ongoing Asia Cup 2023 opening match against Nepal on August 30th, Pakistan faced an early setback as both of their openers fell cheaply. However, Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan managed to stabilize the innings by contributing 86 runs for the third wicket, setting the stage for a substantial total.
Pakistan’s star batsman, Mohammad Rizwan, encountered a regrettable run-out dismissal, which drew attention due to its unorthodox nature. His casual approach during the run led to his downfall, with his bat and legs off the ground as he attempted to complete the run. Captain Babar Azam’s visible frustration at Rizwan’s careless dismissal caught the eye of fans.
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Batting first at Multan Cricket Stadium, Pakistan witnessed the early departures of their openers, Imam-ul-Haq and Fakhar Azam, with the team’s score at a modest 25. However, Babar and Rizwan’s collaborative effort added 86 runs for the third wicket, providing Pakistan with a solid foundation in the Asia Cup’s inaugural game on home soil.
Initially, Babar and Rizwan exercised caution to avoid further setbacks, gradually building their partnership. As they settled in, they aimed to increase the run rate. Unfortunately, Rizwan’s innings ended in the 24th over when Sandeep Lamichhane’s delivery prompted a shot towards the covers. Rizwan’s hasty attempt to secure a quick single resulted in an unconventional dismissal: his bat was airborne, and his legs were off the ground as Dipendra Singh Airee’s precise throw hit the stumps.
Rizwan, visibly disappointed, left the field, and Babar’s frustration was evident as he expressed his displeasure at his teammate’s lack of commitment. Babar’s irked reaction saw him remove his cap and slam it into the ground, underlining his disappointment with the unfortunate turn of events.
Rizwan’s knock of 44 runs from 50 deliveries contributed to the team’s score, while Babar managed to notch his 29th ODI fifty, displaying his prowess and anchoring Pakistan’s innings. Despite a brief hiccup when Agha Salman was dismissed cheaply, Babar and Iftikhar Ahmad, the following batsman, formed an unbeaten partnership, adding 33 runs for the fifth wicket. As the 33rd over concluded, Pakistan stood at 157 for four.
Pakistan’s Asia Cup 2023 opener against Nepal witnessed a series of ups and downs. The duo of Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan demonstrated resilience by steering the innings after the early losses, but Rizwan’s unconventional run-out and Babar’s consequent reaction added a dramatic twist to the match. The combination of Babar’s reliable batting and partnerships with his teammates leaves Pakistan in a favourable position as they continue their campaign in the tournament.