Pakistan beat West Indies, breaking 18-match losing streak in World Cup

Pakistan celebrating a wicket against West Indies © Getty Images

Pakistan broke their 18-match losing streak in the World Cup, defeating West Indies by eight wickets at Seddon Park in Hamilton on Monday (March 21). Earlier in the day, heavy showers played spoilsport and delayed the toss. Once the rain stopped, the wet patches on the outfield created a huge issue.

The players couldn’t get on to the field until five hours after the official starting time. When the toss finally happened, Pakistan won it and chose to bowl first in the 20-overs affair. West Indies didn’t have the best day with the bat, ending with only 89 runs and Pakistan managed to comfortably chase that total. 

Defending 90, Hayley Matthews started off with a maiden over as Sidra Ameen and Muneeba Ali started off cautiously. Chinelle Henry gave five runs in her first over. Ali decided to sweep Matthews in the third over, getting a boundary. She then got another four with a cheeky edge. The pair was smart enough to keep getting singles and doubles from time to time, managing to keep the required rate under check. 

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Ameen was bowled in the fifth over while trying to slog a delivery from Afy Fletcher for just eight runs. Bismah Maroof joined Ali in the middle and the pair didn’t take too many chances. But, they kept rotating the strike and managed to keep the scoreboard moving. At the end of the eighth over, Pakistan was 35 for 1. 

Ali smashed a delivery from Anisa Mohammed in the next over for a boundary, inside out, to release the pressure which was building up. Pakistan was 45 for 1 and going perfectly with the required rate. Ali took on Mohammed once again and smashed her for a boundary over mid-wicket. 

In the 13th over, Ali smashed a ball to cover, was dropped and then the West Indies side missed a run out chance as well off the same delivery. However, that didn’t cost them much as Ali tried to go for a big shot and ended up top edging and getting caught by Deandra Dottin. She was dismissed for 37. 

Omaima Sohail came in next and started her innings well, hitting Fletcher for a boundary over covers.  With four overs to go, Pakistan needed only 13 runs. Dottin was tried in the 18th over but gave away seven runs, courtesy of three doubles. In the end, Maroof stayed unbeaten on 20, while Sohail was there at the other end on 22. They finished the chase with seven balls to spare. 

Earlier in the day, Dottin got a boundary in the long leg region in the very first over, courtesy a misfield. Skipper Maroof started with Diana Baig from one end and spinner Anam Amin from the other. Her first over went for only two singles as she bowled a tight line and length to restrict them. But Dottin decided to take on Baig, smashing her for three boundaries, as the pacer pitched up one and then gave too much width. 

Anam came back with a maiden over after that. Fatima Sana Khan was introduced into the attack and instantly got a breakthrough, removing the in-form Hayley Matthews for just one. The batter tried to go for a lofted drive but only managed to sky it and was eventually caught by Muneeba Ali. Dottin carried on, as she cut Sana for her fifth boundary. 

Anam came back to further stop the flow of runs. She bowled four overs in a trot, giving only six runs. By the end of the eight overs, West Indies were 29 for 1. Nida Dar came into the attack in the 10th over and struck with her first delivery. Dottin, in an attempt to go for a single, nudged one back to Dar, who completed the catch herself, dismissing the opener for 27. 

Spin continued their dominance as it was Nashra Sandhu and Dar who further strangled the innings. Stafanie Taylor, who came at no. 3, was finding it tough to get going. Dar struck again in her second over when Shemaine Campbelle tried to charge down the ground and ended being stumped for just seven runs.

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Part-time spinner Sohail was introduced in the next over and started spinning the ball quite sharply. She got Chedean Nation bowled with a beauty which came back into her. After 15 overs, West Indies were 62 for 4. Dar came back for her last over and pushed West Indies deeper into trouble. 

Kycia Knight, who had come ground the track to smash Sohail for a boundary in the previous over, was dismissed trying to do the same against Dar. She was caught by the mid-on fielder for just eight runs. Henry tried to smash the first ball she faced and was caught brilliantly by Aliya Riaz in the long on region. That completed Dar’s spell and a four-wicket haul. Dar recorded a new career-best and also the best figures by a Pakistan bowler at a World Cup.

Sandhu got the big wicket of Taylor with the first ball of the next over as West Indies slipped from 63 for 4 to 63 for 7. The skipper made 18 from 31 balls and was dismissed while trying to nudge a single but ended up giving a catch to Sandhu. In 18 overs, West Indies had managed 66 for 7. 

In the 19th over though, Sandhu came to finish her spell and was smashed by Fletcher for back to back boundaries, after being guilty of pitching the ball too full. Sana bowled the last over and West Indies managed to sneak in 11 runs, ending with a score of 89 for 7. Fletcher stayed unbeaten on 12. 

Brief scores: Pakistan 90 for 2 (Muneeba Ali 37, Shakera Selman 1/13) beat West Indies 89 for 7 (Deandra Dottin 27, Nida Dar 4/10) by eight wickets. POTM: Nida Dar