Dubai (October 13, 2017): The brilliant century of Babar Azam powered Pakistan to set target of 293 runs in the first One Day International (ODI) at Dubai.
After failure in Test matches, Babar Azam built his innings relatively with slow pace, however he accelerated with some brilliant cricketing shots.
His century was envisaged with five fours and he took 131 balls, while Shoaib Malik hit a rapid fifty, to propel Pakistan to 292-6 against Sri Lanka in the first One-day International here at Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Friday.On a dry surface Pakistan started with early loss of shaky opener Ahmed Shehzad on duck that put Pakistani batsmen on back foot, however Fakhar Zaman, 43, made 64 runs second wicket partnership with Babar Azam that has stabled the innings.
Azam managed a poor 38 runs in the preceding 2-0 Test-series defeat but batted with guts to prove his credentials as a limited-overs batsman.Pakistan got off to a poor start when opener Ahmed Shehzad fell for a 12-ball duck, caught off Lahiru Gamage in the fourth over of the innings.
Then, Fakhar Zaman and Azam took the total to 75 before Akila Dananjaya bowled the opener with a googly.The left-handed Zaman played well during his 45-ball 43 though, hitting four fours and a six, and later, Mohammad Hafeez contributed a useful 38-ball 32 with five fours while skipper Sarfraz Ahmed could score just one.
Hasan Ali and Imad Wasim remained not out on 11 and 10, respectively.