Imad Wasim's all-round show leads Pakistan to big win over Kent in first tour game

Waseem Ahmed 27/04/2019
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A blistering ton from Imad Wasim against Kent.

Pakistan’s preparations for the 2019 ICC World Cup in England started off on the right note with the Men in Green recording a thumping 100-run win over Kent in their first tour game at Beckenham.

Imad Wasim put in a fine all-round show which saw the southpaw first register a quick-fire ton with the bat before putting in a measured bowling display.

Led by Imad’s unbeaten 78-ball 117 down the order, Pakistan posted a massive total of 358-7 in their 50 overs after batting first.

Openers Imam-ul-Haq and Fakhar Zaman put on a 92-run stand to set the tone for the day with the latter going on to make 76 (59) before his stay was brought to an end by Imran Qayyum. The left-armed Kent spinner also accounted for Babar Azam in a fine display which saw him claim four wickets in total.

However, that was as good as it got for Kent with first Haris Sohail and then Imad turning on the style for Pakistan. Sohail continued his recent good form in limited-overs cricket with a fine 75-run knock but it was Imad who stole the show with a sublime innings which included four sixes and as many as 13 boundaries.

Haris Sohail chipped in with a 75-run knock.

Haris Sohail chipped in with a 75-run knock.

Sohail and Imad added 139 runs for the sixth wicket before Sohail fell in the 47th over but Imad then rained down the boundaries with more than 50 runs coming off the final four overs.

In reply, Kent never got going in the chase with their openers Zak Crawley and Sean Dickson falling cheaply to Faheem Ashraf who was excellent with the new ball.

Only Alex Blake (89) and Ollie Robinson (49) were able to muster any resistance with the bat for Kent who were ultimately bowled out for 258 runs at the start of the 45th over.

Yasir Shah picked three wickets for Pakistan but the leg-spinner was highly expensive with his 10 overs going for 90 runs. Hasan Ali and Faheem snared two wickets apiece while part-time spinner Fakhar Zaman also chipped in with a couple.

Pakistan will now take on Northamptonshire in their second tour match on Monday before they lock horns with Leicestershire on May 1. Following the completion of the tour games, Pakistan will lock horns with hosts England in a one-off T20I followed by a five-match ODI series.

BRIEF SCORES

Pakistan: 358-7

Imad Wasim: 118 not out (78)

Fakhar Zaman: 76 (59)

Imran Qayyum: 4-45

Kent: 258 all out

Alex Blake: 89 (48)

Yasir Shah: 3-90

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Pakistan U19 team's upcoming tour of Sri Lanka called off at the behest of SLC

Waseem Ahmed 27/04/2019
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Pakistan's U19 squad was due to tour Sri Lanka.

The Pakistan U19 squad’s upcoming tour of Sri Lanka has been called off following the Easter Sunday terrorist attacks in the island country that left over 250 people dead.

Three churches and four hotels were targeted in the spate of suicide bombings with Sri Lanka’s authorities sounding a warning for more potential attacks in the near future.

According to a report by ESPNcricinfo, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has decided to call off the visit of the Pakistan team in light of the developing situation.

Pakistan’s U19 squad was due to arrive in Sri Lanka on April 30 where they were slated to play two four-day matches along with three one-day clashes against the hosts.

“The tour has been postponed indefinitely,” a SLC official was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

“It was a decision taken by SLC, as we didn’t want to take any chances,” the official added.

The two boards are said to be monitoring the situation closely and the tour could be potentially rescheduled for a later date.

With the Sri Lankan series called off for now, Pakistan’s U19 squad will now focus on their tour of South Africa which is scheduled to begin on June 19. The team had managed to reach the semi-final of the 2018 U19 World Cup in New Zealand where they faced a loss against eventual champions India.

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South Africa to assess Dale Steyn's fitness for 2019 World Cup following IPL injury exit

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Steyn's IPL campaign lasted just two games. Image - BCCI/SPORTZPICS.

South Africa are sweating over the fitness of pacer Dale Steyn ahead of the 2019 ICC World Cup in England after he was ruled out of the Indian Premier League (IPL) with a shoulder injury.

The veteran had been roped in by Royal Challengers Bangalore as a replacement for the injured Nathan Coulter-Nile and played two matches for the franchise before experiencing a flare-up of his old shoulder injury.

Steyn is now set to see a specialist in South Africa to assess the extent of the injury and faces an anxious wait just one month ahead of the start of the 2019 World Cup in England.

“Upon assessment and subsequent investigations, a flare-up of his right shoulder was confirmed,” Proteas team manager Mohammed Moosajee stated.

“With the World Cup around the corner, it is our priority to get him back to full fitness before the squad departs on May 19.

“He will consult with a shoulder specialist upon his return and a recovery plan will be put in place.”

The 35-year-old was only last week named in the 15-man South Africa World Cup squad after battling a spate of injuries over the past two years or so.

He had been out of the Proteas ODI squad for more than two years after fracturing his shoulder in a tour of Australia.

In the two IPL games that Steyn played for RCB, he picked up four wickets while going at an economy-rate of 8.62.

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