Mohammad Irfan Has A Forgettable Day With The Ball On His Comeback
The 37-year-old Mohammad Irfan made a comeback to international cricket in the 1st T20I against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Sunday. Irfan was making his return to the game at the highest level for the first time since 2016. In fact, he also became the oldest pacer to represent Pakistan since Imran Khan (39) in 1992 where he had led Pakistan to their first and only World Cup triumph. However, Mohammad Irfan's comeback to international cricket was a forgettable one.
Irfan's forgettable day with the ball in hand
Chasing a revised target of 119 in the rain-curtailed 15-over match, Australia got off to a brisk start riding on skipper Aaron Finch's quickfire 16-ball 37 at a strike rate of 231.25 including five boundaries and two maximums courtesy of Mohammad Irfan's second over of his first spell. Irfan had started the proceedings for Pakistan as he gave away five runs in the first over. In the following over, Mohammad Amir gave away eight runs and when Irfan came back to bowl the next over and it seems that he forgot his line and length in that particular over as he ended up giving away 26 runs thereby swinging the pendulum in Australia's favor for the time being and it was Finch himself who took the tall pacer to the cleaners. The Aussie skipper attacked from the very first ball onwards by whacking Irfan for a maximum over deep mid-wicket fence and then followed it up with a boundary off the next ball which made Irfan so nervous that he ended up stepping over the line on the following delivery which was also despatched for a boundary as well. The free hit delivery was also hit into the stands. Nonetheless, the veteran pacer managed to gain momentum in the remaining three deliveries as he gave away just one boundary along with a dot ball and a single.
Match gets abandoned due to rain
When it seemed that Australia would cruise to an easy win, the rain gods intervened and the players were forced to leave the field. Later, when the downpour became heavy, it was decided that the match had to be abandoned as no further play was possible. The second T20I will be played at the Manuka Oval in Canberra on Tuesday. Earlier, after having won the toss and electing to bowl first, Australia had Pakistan on the mat at 10/2 before skipper Babar Azam resurrected the Men In Green. Azam scored a solid ball unbeaten 59 which took the visitors to 107/5 at the end of 15 overs.
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