CricketNext GET APP

Pakistan vs Hong Kong, Asia Cup 2018, Highlights - As It Happened

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: September 16, 2018, 10:46 PM IST

Match 2, Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai 16 September, 2019

Toss won by Hong Kong (decided to bat)

Pakistan beat Hong Kong by 8 wickets

Man of the Match: Usman Khan



Usman Khan, Man of the Match: “When I came on to bowl I just tried to take a wicket with the new ball. But luck was not with me today. In the second spell, I tried, and with the ball reversing I was able to take wickets. Fitness is fine; there was just a little bit of bleeding in my toe. I'm happy with my bowling today and it's given me plenty of confidence." 


Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed after the match: "This was a complete performance by us. But as captain I saw a couple of things that we will have to work on as well. For us to go the distance in the tournament, we need to get early wickets. Early on the ball didn't swing and we seemed alarmed by that. We have time to adjust to this before the India game. It's good to win, but to win against India, we have to be at our very best" 


Hong Kong skipper Anshuman Rath after the match: "Lots of soft dismissals for us. 116 was not enough. It was a good wicket; credit goes to the Pakistan bowlers. Our off-spinners are top class, but we just didn't have enough runs on the board. I think early on it swung a bit and there was a bit of bounce. We got starts but we couldn't convert them. One fifty-run partnership is not enough to post a good total." 


FOUR! Shoaib Malik ends the match in style with a boundary through the mid-wicket region. Dominant showing from Pakistan all round and the perfect warm-up for the next game. India will be a much tougher test but it's always good to start a tournament with a win. 


50 for Imam-ul-Haq! Wonderful innings from the southpaw as he's been solid but also looked to attack in the latter stages of the innings. Good showing from him, especially with a big match against India looming. 


FOUR! What a shot that was by Imam. Charges down the ground and comfortably clears the in-field for a boundary. He's on 49 now and Pakistan are 114/2 in 23 overs. 3 more runs needed! 


22 overs gone and Pakistan are 104/2. Shoaib Malik is out in the middle with Imam, who's on 42. Can he get himself a 50? It would most certainly be well deserved given how solid he's been. 


SIX! Imam is in a hurry to get the remaining runs. He steps out of the crease to dispatch a short ball from Nawaz with a heave over the leg side. Only 15 runs needed for the win now. 


But not so fast! Ehsan Khan now gets Babar Azam to edge one to the wicket-keeper! He sees the ball land slightly wide of off-stump and decides to give himself a bit of room to cut. Unfortunately, he didn't have enough room to play that shot and his edge goes into Scott McKechnie's gloves. Pakistan are 93/2 after 20.2 overs. 


20 overs are gone and Pakistan are 93/1. They only need 24 runs to win and they have 30 overs to get them. Expect some big-hitting to finish the game now, especially since both the batsmen seem well set. 


50-run stand between Babar and Imam. They haven't been tested much, truth be told, but you can only beat the team in front of you and Pakistan's batsmen have been effective all evening. They are 91/1 after 19 overs. 


FOUR! Babar dances down the track on the very first ball of the over and hits a boundary down the ground. Excellent use of the feet. He then hits the fifth ball of the over for a four as well with a well-timed cut shot through the off-side. Pakistan are 88/1 after 18 overs. Only 29 more runs needed. 


Ehsan Khan has been economical, giving away just 19 runs in his five overs so far. However, Hong Kong will undoubtedly feel hard done by the review, especially since replays proved that Imam could have been given out LBW if they still had their review. Pakistan are 78/1 after 17 overs. 


FOUR! Babar Azam, it seems, is done waiting. Of course, getting served with a short and wide ball always helps. He dispatches the ball through the cover-point region to end the 15th over with a boundary. Pakistan are 71/1 and nearing the target. 


SIX! Babar Azam gets an ordinary ball and dispatches it over the ropes. He gets to the pitch of the ball and hits it well enough so it clears the ropes with some ease. Excellent shot from Babar. Pakistan are 64/1 after 14 overs. 


Oh dear, Hong Kong have been dealt a bad hand here. They had Imam trapped plumb but had to go for a review as the decision was not out. Somehow, the third umpire thought there was an edge despite there being no spike in UltraEdge when the ball was near the bat. What a shockingly poor decision that was. Pakistan are 56/1 after 13 overs. 


Perhaps sensing that Pakistan are playing the pacers with little discomfort, Hong Kong bring on another spinner in Nadeem Ahmed. His first over goes for six although Imam and Babar are having to work hard for the runs, dealing in ones and twos rather than boundaries. They are 54/1 after 12 overs. 


Pakistan are treating Ehsan Khan with some respect. They're not looking to attack him early, opting instead to see the spinner out and wait to dispatch only the bad balls. It's worth noting that his line and length have been quite good so far. Pakistan are 48/1 after 11 overs. 


Babar Azam is the new man in for Pakistan. He doesn't try to do too much too soon, preferring to run twos in order to get himself off the mark. The target is such a small one that it won't matter if he takes a few balls to settle in. They are 45/1 after 9 overs. 


OUT! Pakistan lose a wicket and it's the dangerous Fakhar Zaman who has to depart. The change of bowling does the trick. Off-spinner Ehsan Khan comes in to bowl and he manages to get Zaman to edge one to the wicket-keeper, who fumbles it once before collecting to get the first wicket of the innings. Pakistan are 41/1 after 8.1 overs. 


FOUR! Imam had been relatively quiet in the overs before dinner but he's obviously got a feel of the conditions and doesn't hesitate to hit Aizaz Khan for a boundary by charging down the wicket and smashing it wide of mid-off on the last ball of the over. Pakistan are 41/0 after 8 overs. 


Welcome back to live coverage of the match between Pakistan and Hong Kong. Dinner has been served and eaten by both teams and Pakistan only need 82 runs to win in 43 overs. It's more a case of how soon they can finish off the required runs rather than whether or not they will get them. 


And dinner has been taken after 7 overs. Pakistan are cantering along at a nice pace here; 7 overs have been played and they have already scored 35 runs. At this rate they will finish the game in less than 20 overs. Zaman has found his groove and Imam has been solid. 


SIX! Fakhar Zaman is cutting loose at this point. Both he and Imam are well settled and he isn't going to turn down a short ball that lacks pace. It's just asking to be hit and he heaves it over the leg-side boundary after going down on one leg and clearing his front foot. He follows this up with another boundary, hitting a four down the ground. 


Aizaz Khan's first over goes for 6. Not the best of starts for him but he did well to pull things back after getting hit for a boundary in his very first ball. Doesn't mean much to Pakistan though; they're cruising at this stage at 25/0 after 6 overs. 


Aizaz Khan comes in to bowl his first over and his first ball is a loose one on to the pads of Imam, who gleefully flicks it away for four. The next ball sees him over-compensate and bowl it wide and he nearly gives away another boundary. 


Tanwir Afzal continues to be economical; in his three overs he has only conceded 3 runs. However, merely bowling economically won't do for Hong Kong at this stage; they need to get early wickets if they are to have even a slight chance of winning this game. Pakistan are 19/0 after 5 overs. 


FOUR! Zaman is tired of waiting, it seems. Nawaz goes a little wide and Zaman plays a beautiful cover drive for the innings' first boundary. He gets on top of the delivery early and drives it through the cover region. He placed it well too, as the off-side field is a bit packed. 


Tanwir Afzal bowls a maiden over, meaning the scoreboard remains unaffected after the third over. Given the low total Pakistan have to chase, they can afford to take their time with this and not make things harder on themselves by losing early wickets. 


No boundaries just yet but Pakistan collect 7 runs off the second over largely through looking to run two's whenever possible. They are 10/0 after 2 overs. 


Pakistan vs Hong Kong, Asia Cup 2018, Highlights - As It Happened

(AP Images)

Preview:Pakistan and Hong Kong have faced off in a One-Day International only twice - in 2004 and 2008 - so far with the Men in Green winning both encounters rather easily. Much of the same will be expected when the two sides kickstart their Asia Cup campaign at the Dubai International Stadium on Sunday. Pakistan, who are coming off a 5-0 win against Zimbabwe, will be keen to get their tournament kicking with a convincing win. They are playing on their adopted home ground and know the conditions better than anyone. However, they are known to blow hot and cold all too often, something their captain Sarfraz Ahmed will want to keep reminding them.

In fact, their recent One-Day International record makes for a rather interesting read. In their last three series, Pakistan have swept Zimbabwe 5-0, been whitewashed by New Zealand 5-0 and then have beaten Sri Lanka 5-0. The trend suggests, once Pakistan are in the groove they are pretty much been hard to stop, whilst also pointing out that one loss can go a long way in denting their confidence. With India to come next, Pakistan will be hoping for a positive start in their first game and have a good chance of doing so against Hong Kong.

For starters, they have one of the most balanced sides in the competition. Fakhar Zaman recently became the quickest batsman in ODI history to complete 1000 runs while Imam-ul-Haq has also been in tremendous touch. Babar Azam, who is ranked second place behind Virat Kohli on the ODI rankings, will look to carry on his excellent form while the experience of Shoaib Malik and Ahmed will go a long way in bolstering the middle-order. The bowling department, as usual, has a fair variety with the likes of Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, Usman Khan, Junaid Khan and Shaheen Afridi in the mix while Shadab Khan and Faheem Ashraf have donned the all-rounder's hat rather well of late.

Pakistan have form on their side and an excellent set of players who are acclimatised to the conditions rather well. They will have massive support behind them and it only needs to be seen how well the Champions Trophy 2017 winners cope with the pressure and expectations. Hong Kong, on the other hand, have little to lose. They are returning to the Asia Cup after a gap of ten years and with new skipper in Anshuman Rath at the helm, will be keen to prove a point after being stripped off their ODI status post a disappointing World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe. They have done well to reach the competition defeating sides likes UAE and Nepal in the qualifiers to make it to the final six, and like their captain said will want to "just go out and enjoy themselves". In Rath and Nizakat Khan, they have a solid opening duo and with the experience of Babar Hayat and Nadeem Ahmed will hope to cause a few upsets at the multi-nation event.

Playing XI:
Hong Kong: Anshuman Rath (capt.), Babar Hayat, Nizakat Khan, Tanwir Afzal, Aizaz Khan, Christopher Carter, Nadeem Ahmed, Scott McKechnie (wk), Ehsan Khan, Ehsan Nawaz, Kinchit Shah

Pakistan:: Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Sarfraz Ahmed(w/c), Asif Ali, Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, Usman Khan

Team Rankings

1 India 5007 116
2 New Zealand 3570 108
3 South Africa 4397 105
4 Australia 4566 104
5 England 5490 104
FULL Ranking