The win was setup by Javeria who made most of a dropped chance on 9 to lead her side to 139/6 in 20 overs at Guyana International Stadium. Left-arm spinner Nashra Sandhu then produced the most economical spell by a Pakistan woman in a T20I returning figures of 2/8 in four overs as Ireland limped to 101/9 with only two of their batters managing to enter double-digits.
Things, however, looked different earlier in the day for Ireland. Their bowlers had stifled the Pakistan batters not allowing them to get away at any stage. The first six overs saw just the one boundary hit as they managed only 20 runs for the loss of one wicket.
Javeria, batting at No.3, looked to up the ante and had a slice of luck when the fielder at long on misjudged a catch. There was no looking back for the skipper post that as the boundaries started to flow for Pakistan. She smashed leg-spinner Celeste Raack for two consecutive fours before Ayesha Zafar two got going with two his to the fence, off Laura Delany. A run out ended Zafar's knock on 21 but Javeria carried on.
Pakistan found new spunk as they started to collect a boundary an over with Javeria, in particular, finding gaps at every given chance. She reached her half-century in 41 deliveries with a heave wide of long on and celebrated that with back to back fours, one a loft over the bowler's head and then a sweep to the deep square leg fence.
In all, Javeria smoked 11 boundaries during her knock and almost single-handedly guided Pakistan to a competitive score. Pacer Lucy O'Reilly picked up three wickets in the last over but the damage had been done by then. Pakistan collected 110 in the last 10 overs.
Lucy O'Reilly returned impressive figures of 3/19 in her four overs but did not get the adequate support from her teammates.
Ireland's chase got off to a rocky start with Sana Mir accounting for opener Gaby Lewis in just the third over for 2.
Clare Shillington struck five crisp boundaries during her 25-ball 27 but fell to Sandhu in the last over of the Power Play as Ireland reached 36/2 after 6 overs. The Pakistan spinners then came into their own after that as Ireland found runs hard to come by. Sandhu trapped Eimear Richardson for a duck as the required rate kept on increasing.
Isobel Joyce took 31 balls for her 30 but found little support from the other end before she fell to lbw to Aiman Anwer. Over 14 to 19 saw Ireland lose six wickets for not many as Pakistan recorded their first points of the tournament.
While Sandhu was the most economical of all bowlers, Mir, Aiman Anwer and Aliya Riaz all chipped in with two wickets each themselves. Javeria was awarded Player of the Match for her 74*.
Brief scores: Pakistan 139/6 in 20 overs (Javeria Khan 74*; Lucy O'Reilly 3/19) beat Ireland 101/9 (Isobel Joyce 30, Claire Shillington 27; Nashra Sandhu 2/8, Sana Mir 2/20) by 38 runs
First Published: November 14, 2018, 8:38 AM IST