Australia obliterated in catastrophic demolition
AUSTRALIA crashed to another humiliating loss in the UAE, going down by 66 runs and recording its equal third-lowest score in history in the opening T20 against Pakistan on Thursday morning (AEST).
Only three Aussies made it to double figures as the visiting batsmen were humbled once again by a Pakistan bowling cartel that had no trouble causing chaos in the foreign conditions.
After being belted in the second Test by 356 runs, Justin Langer’s men were hoping fresh faces and a different format would provide a change in fortunes but the batting collapses that have plagued the team while wearing whites transferred to the coloured clothing.
Set 156 to win after Pakistan posted 8/155 from its 20 overs, led by Babar Azam’s 68 not out and 39 from Mohammad Hafeez, Australia was never in the hunt. Aaron Finch departed in the first over without scoring and that set the tone for an astonishing powerplay.
In the first six overs Pakistan took six wickets and conceded just 26 runs, making it the best bowling powerplay ever in a T20 international.
The best-ever bowling performance in a T20I powerplay? #PAKvAUS
Runs conceded: 26
Wickets taken: SIX pic.twitter.com/VQZndpB5FM
Australia 22-6 (5.2 overs) in their T20 match v Pakistan. Extraordinary.
Finch had his stumps knocked over by Imad Wasim and opening partner D’Arcy Short suffered the same fate later that over after crashing his first ball for four.
Faheem Ashraf then castled Glenn Maxwell for two, second-gamer Ben McDermott was run out for a duck and Alex Carey became Wasim’s third victim when he was caught behind for one.
Chris Lynn found the rope twice but when Ashraf cleaned him up for 14 any hint of optimism evaporated. Ashton Agar (19) and Nathan Coulter-Nile (34) put up a rearguard action with a seventh-wicket stand of 38 but the end came quickly after Agar was caught behind.
Adam Zampa and Andrew Tye both fell for single figures and Coulter-Nile was last man out when he was bowled by Shadab Khan as the Aussies were dismissed for just 89 in 16.5 overs.
It’s become an all too familiar tale of Australia’s batsmen failing to back up its bowlers and so it was again on Thursday. While Pakistan’s top order grabbed the game by the throat to reach 1-105 inside 14 overs, the away side’s quicks fought back admirably to spark a late collapse.
Stanlake was at his menacing best, picking up 3-21 from his four overs while short-form specialist Tye used all his variations to perfection to snare 3-24 from four overs.
The spin threat from the men in gold was largely overshadowed by the fast bowlers as Ashton Agar went wicketless and conceded 19 runs from two overs while Adam Zampa finished with 1-32.
Left-arm wrist-spinner Short chipped in with a wicket as Pakistan capitulated in the back half of the innings, losing 7-28.
But as demoralising as that was it didn’t come back to haunt Mickey Arthur’s troops, who ensured the game was theirs with a blistering powerplay of their own in the field.
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