Veteran all-rounder and former captain Shoaib Malik on Sunday slammed the fastest-ever half century for Pakistan in the history of the T20 World Cups. Batting against Scotland in the last Super 12 tie in Sharjah, he smashed six sixes and a boundary to score an unbeaten 54 off 18 deliveries to help Pakistan post 189 for 4 in 20 overs.
Malik arrived at the crease in the 16th over when Pakistan were reduced to 112 for 3. He not only stitched a crucial 30-run stand with captain Babar Azam (66) for the fourth wicket and then amplified the innings by showering some colossal sixes all-around the park. As Malik notched up his 9th T20I fifty with a massive six, his wife and Indian Tennis star Sania Mirza was seen cheering and clapping for him in the stands.
Malik’s ravishing innings helped Pakistan setting a huge 190-run target for Scotland. In reply, Richie Berrington scored a 37-ball 54 but his innings wasn’t enough to take the Scottish side. The Men in Green restricted their opponents to 117 for 6 and won their final Super 12 game by 72 runs.
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With an 18-ball fifty, Malik also equalled the record of third-fastest fifty held by KL Rahul and Glenn Maxwell. While the Indian opener reached this feat against Scotland in the ongoing tournament, the Australian all-rounder reached the mark against Pakistan in the 2014 T20 World Cup.
Netherlands’ Stephan Myburgh holds the record for the second fastest half century as he scored 52 off 17 balls against Ireland in the 2014 edition.
Former India all-rounder Yuvraj Singh’s 12-ball half century against England in 2007 remains the fastest in the history of the T20 World Cup, and in international cricket as well.
Malik also bagged the player of the match award for his stellar performance. Speaking about his form in the post-match presentation, he said he feel fit and wants to see himself playing consistently.
“Yes, I’m in good form but I want to see myself more consistent to help the team. Overall, I feel fit. It is going to be a big game and we have to give our best shot,” said Malik in the post-match presentation ceremony.
Pakistan will now face Australia in the semi-finals on Thursday in Dubai.