Pakistan‘s top-order batsman Babar Azam played an exquisite knock, as it was his fine innings of 100, which allowed the visitors to steer towards a fair total of 282 for the loss of five wickets, against hosts West Indies in the second of the three-match One-Day International (ODI) series at the Providence Stadium in Guyana on Sunday. Apart from Azam, no other batsmen could contribute as decently as him, with Imad Wasim being the second highest scorer with an unbeaten 43 runs. As for West Indies, Shannon Gabriel was the top wicket-taker with 2 for 50. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Pakistan vs West Indies 2017, 2nd ODI at Guyana
As for Azam, he got his fourth ODI ton against West Indies, and also becomes the most successful Pakistan batsman against the side in the format. He had earlier broken Saeed Anwar’s record of two tons against the West Indies in 2016, when West Indies toured in United Arab Emirates (UAE). Azam is now just a ton behind Brian Lara, who has five tons against Pakistan, to become the most successful batsmen when it comes to between these nation. Also, Azam now has taken the second most few innings to score 5 ODI tons, after South Africa’s Quinton de Kock. Azam has taken 23 innings, whereas de Kock has taken 19 innings. Azam is followed by India’s Shikhar Dhawan, who has taken 28 innings to achieve the feat.
Earlier, West Indies skipper Jason Holder won the coin toss and elected top bowl first, as he fielded an unchanged squad from the first ODI win. As for Pakistan, skipper Sarfraz Ahmed made just a change in the form of Junaid Khan coming in for Wahab Riaz. Pakistan were off to a shaky start, as with just 16 runs on the board, they lost their opening wicket in the form of Ahmed Shehzad, who fell for mere five to Gabriel in the fifth over. Out came then Azam to support opener Kamran Akmal. However, just after 28 runs, Akmal followed his fellow opener Shehzad back to the pavilion, as he fell for 21 to Alzarri Joseph in the ninth over. FULL CRICKET UPDATES: Pakistan vs West Indies 2017, 2nd ODI at Guyana
Nevertheless, it was the pair of Azam and Hafeez, who put up a crucial 69-run stand for the third wicket, as Azam contributed 34, while Hafeez contributed 32 in the stand. Azam continued to bat steady, while Hafeez fell for 32 to Ashley Nurse in the 26th over, after being stumped by Shai Hope, as the score read 113 for 3.
Out came veteran Shoaib Malik, but was dismissed just 15 runs later, as he fell for mere nine to Devendra Bishoo in the 29th over. However, Azam had brought up his half-century by then off 61 balls, including four boundaries. The next man out to bat was the skipper Sarfraz, and along with Azam, he put up another fair 55-run stand for the fifth wicket, as Azam contributed 22, while Sarfraz contributed 26 in the stand. However, it was at the score of 183, he fell in the 39th over for 26 to Gabriel.
It was then the next and final pair of Azam along with Imad Wasim, who put up an unbeaten 99-run stand for the sixth wicket to steer Pakistan to a commanding total of 282 for the loss of six wickets. Azam also brought up his fifth ODI ton in the process off 123 deliveries, including six boundaries, along with a strike rate of 95.
Pakistan 282 for 5 in 50 overs (Babar Azam 125*, Imad Wasim 43*; Shannon Gabriel 2 for 50) vs West Indies.