At the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 in India, Pakistan defeated the Netherlands by 81 runs in the opening game.
The Men in Green bowled the Netherlands out for 205 in a match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium after setting a score of 287.
Meanwhile, Babar Azam and company made history by becoming the first Pakistani team to win the World Cup on Indian soil. Pakistan failed to claim a single victory in any of the three previous World Cups held in India (1987, 1996, and 2011).
After losing three wickets in the first 10 overs of the match, Babar Azam’s team had to register a total of 286 before making a commendable comeback.
Choosing to bowl first in Hyderabad after winning the toss was Scott Edwards. Saud Shakeel, a middle-order batsman, scored 50 runs in just 37 balls, whereas Babar Azam was out after 18 deliveries for just 5 runs.
Mohammed Rizwan and Shakeel, a middle-order pair, led the battle, while Shadab Khan and Mohammed Nawaz later contributed with the bat to help Pakistan reach a total that may win the game.
After the visitors were six wickets behind after 37 overs, Pakistani vice-captain Shadab Khan took over their first innings.
Shadab Khan entered the middle and took his time with several deliveries before continuing to rotate the strike with some effective boundaries. He made it to 22 off of 21 deliveries with ease. But what deserves praise are his first and second sixes from Pakistan’s innings.
Mohammad Nawaz, in the meantime, played a significant innings, scoring 39 off 43 balls.
When Pakistan was asked to bat first, Mohammad Rizwan and Saud Shakeel each scored half-centuries of 68, which helped the team to record a respectable total. For the Netherlands, Colin Ackermann broke two dismissals while Bas de Leede replied with four wickets.
The Netherlands had a strong start to their innings, but they were unable to maintain it, losing wickets at regular intervals until they were all out for 205 runs.
Vikramjit Singh, a left-handed opener, and all-arounder Bas de Leede led their team in scoring with 52 and 67 runs, respectively.
Haris Rauf took three wickets, Hasan Ali took two, while Shaheen Afridi, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, and Iftikhar Ahmed each took one. All six of Pakistan’s bowlers also claimed wickets.