USA pull off giant-killing act via Super Over win against Pakistan - Cricket News | Cricket Updates | Match Report


Thursday, June 6, 2024

USA pull off giant-killing act via Super Over win against Pakistan

 USA stunned Pakistan by defending 18 in the Super Over.

USA stunned Pakistan by defending 18 in the Super Over. © Getty

After taming Bangladesh in the build up to the 2024 T20 World Cup, the United States of America proved it wasn't a flash in the pan as they stunned Pakistan at the Grand Prairie Stadium in Dallas, Texas on Thursday (June 6).

It was a collective effort with several heroes turning up for USA. Nosthush Kenjige and Saurabh Netravalkar's fine bowling kept Pakistan to 159/7 after the hosts opted to bowl. Monank Patel, Aaron Jones and Andries Gous came up with good contributions while and Nitish Kumar played an important role as well with his 14, which included a four off the final ball that took the game into the Super Over.

Pakistan looked off colour and lacked disciplined in various phases of the match, including the Super Over, as the USA defended 18 to register a historic victory and move to the top of the Group A table.

What happened in the Super Over?

Aaron Jones and Harmeet Singh came out to bat in the Super Over for USA, with the former placing the ball behind square on the off side off Mohammad Amir for a four off the first ball. Amir tried to nail the yorkers and didn't concede another boundary in the over. But he was guilty of bowling several wides, with the batters sneaking in extra runs to finish with 18. Saurabh Netravalkar started with a dot ball to Iftikhar Ahmed but the batter put away the next through the midwicket region for a four, which was followed by a wide. Iftikhar tried to clear long off but a terrific diving catch from Milind Kumar put further pressure on Pakistan who needed 14 from 3. The next one was a wide again, followed by a fortunate boundary via leg-byes. A couple off the next brought it down to 7 off the final delivery, with Shadab needing to clear the ropes for another Super Over. But that wasn't to be as Netravalkar conceded only a single to deliver a famous win for USA.



Powerplay: USA make early inroads

Phase score - 30/3 [RR: 5.00, 4s/6s: 0/2]

USA started with the left-arm spin of Kenjige, who was swept for a six by Mohammad Rizwan in the opening over. But Rizwan's stay was short-lived as Netravalkar found the outside edge and Steven Taylor took a stunning one-handed catch diving to his right at slip. Kenjige also found success as Usman Khan's attempt to go over the off side resulted in a catch to long-off. Fakhar Zaman started with a six off Kenjige but Babar Azam was struggling at the other end, unable to rotate strike and find the boundaries. To add to Pakistan's problems, Fakhar handed a catch to short fine leg attempting a lap shot in Ali Khan's opening over. Another economical over from Netravalkar, who had figures of 1-8 from his three overs, helped the USA keep the opposition in check in the powerplay, with the Pakistan captain managing only 4 off 14.

Middle overs (7-15): Shadab counterattacks but USA hit back

Phase score - 83/2 [RR: 9.22, 4s/6s: 5/4]

USA continued to keep it tight after the powerplay, with Pakistan getting only 46 in the first nine overs. The much-needed impetus came in the 10th over, which was bowled by Jasdeep Singh, with Shadab striking two successive sixes and Babar ended the over with his first four, which was also the first of Pakistan's innings. 20 came off the 10th over and Pakistan continued the momentum as Babar hit a four off Kenjige and followed it up with a six off Harmeet Singh, and the bowler was also struck for a four and a six by Shadab in the same over.

The fourth wicket pair put on a quick-fire 72 run stand which was broken when Shadab swept a Kenjige delivery to short fine leg. The left-arm spinner trapped Azam Khan in front off the very next ball, with a review failing to come to the batter's aid, to finish with 3 for 30 despite going for 17 off his first two overs. Babar put away a short ball from Harmeet for a four but Pakistan had a lot of work to do in the death overs to put up a good total.

Death overs (16-20): Afridi cameo helps Pakistan past 150

Phase score - 46/2 [RR: 9.20, 4s/6s: 3/3]

A six for Babar off Jasdeep, followed by a four for Iftikhar, set the ball rolling for Pakistan in the death overs but the captain fell in the same over, trapped leg-before. Corey Anderson and Ali Khan did well to keep it tight, conceding only 6 and 7 respectively in the 17th and 18th overs. Netravalkar returned to pick up the wicket of Iftikhar in the 19th over but was hit for a six by Shaheen Afridi who also struck a maximum off Ali Khan in the final over, scoring a handy 23 that helped Pakistan set USA a target of 160.


Powerplay: USA off to positive start

Phase score - 44/1 [RR: 7.33, 4s/6s: 7/0]

In contrast to Pakistan's start, USA got off the blocks quickly as Monank Patel scored regular boundaries. Mohammad Amir was wayward with his lines in his first over while Monank hit three fours off Afridi's first two overs and Pakistan also ended up losing a review after going upstairs for a ball that pitched outside leg. There was swing on offer for the Pakistan pacers as well but that was offset by USA's positive batting, especially their captain. Naseem Shah, meanwhile, started with a four-run over and struck in his second, getting Taylor to edge a length delivery to the 'keeper. Naseem also found the outside edge of Gous's bat but the ball landed short of Iftikhar at slip and went to the boundary. The powerplay ended on a positive note for USA with Gous playing a pick-up shot over midwicket for a four off Naseem, with the hosts getting seven fours in the first six overs.

Middle overs (7-15): Pakistan strike after Monank-Gous stand

Phase score - 71/2 [RR: 7.88, 4s/6s: 7/2]

Gous put away a couple of deliveries from Haris Rauf past point for fours, showcasing good timing and finding the gaps effectively. Apart from the boundaries, Monank and Gous rotated the strike well with singles and twos to keep USA on track in the chase. Shadab Khan gave away only five in his first over but was hit for a straight six by Gous in his second as USA made good progress, moving to 76/1 at the halfway stage of the innings. The half-century stand was raised in the 12th over, off 38 deliveries, with Gous having contributed 35. Monank, who had slowed down a touch, began accelerating again as he struck a couple of fours off Iftikhar in the 12th over.

Monank continued his one-upmanship against Afridi when he returned to the attack, going over mid-off four a four followed by an authoritative straight six that helped the opener bring up a 34-ball fifty and help USA past 100 in the 13th over. The 68-run stand ended in the 14th over when Rauf had Gous bowled for 35 off 26. A lucky boundary for Aaron Jones off an inside edge helped him get off the mark in the same over but USA suffered another setback in the next over as Monank, looking to force an Amir delivery through the off side, edged it to the 'keeper.

Death overs (16-20): Jones, Nitish overcome Pakistan pacers to force Super Over

Phase score - 44/0 [RR: 7.33, 4s/6s: 2/2]

With 45 needed off 30, Jones took on Shadab to clear the midwicket fence for a much-needed six. But a tight over from Naseem, in which he conceded only six, put the pressure back on USA, who needed 28 from 18. Afridi missed a yorker as Jones carved a low full toss over cover for a four. But only seven came off the over, leaving USA needing 21 off the last two overs. Pakistan lost a review for a leg-before appeal in the 19th over but Amir was accurate with his yorkers as he cut off the boundary options. Nitish Kumar managed three off the last ball, bringing the equation to 15 off the last over. Rauf conceded only three runs off his first three deliveries in the final over before Jones nailed a low full toss past the fence. Nitish went over mid off for a boundary off the last ball with five needed to take the game into the super over.

Brief scores: Pakistan 159/7 in 20 overs (Babar Azam 44, Shadab Khan 40; Nosthush Kenjige 3-30, Saurabh Netravalkar 2-18) tied with United States of America 159/3 in 20 overs (Monank Patel 50, Aaron Jones 36*; Mohammad Amir 1-15, Naseem Shah 1-16). USA 18/1 beat Pakistan 13/1 in the Super Over.

What next for the teams?

The USA have a five-day break before their next match against India on June 12 at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in New York. Pakistan also face India, on June 9 at the same venue.

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