USA stunned cricket heavyweights Pakistan in Super Over tiebreaker in T20 World Cup

GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas (AP) — Aaron Jones hit the ball out of the park again, and America beat cricket heavyweights Pakistan in a Super Over tiebreaker in one of the biggest upsets of a Twenty20 World Cup.

After a match-winning batting performance in the tournament opener against Canada, Jones was again instrumental in Thursday’s dramatic win over 2022 runners-up Pakistan.

Cricket in America has a long but relatively little-known history. It is Pakistan’s national game, a long-standing member of the cricket establishment and a three-time finalist in the T20 World Cup. Star players are highly paid and household names.

Jones flew under the radar.

“It’s a big achievement, (they) beat Pakistan playing for the first time,” US captain Monang Patel said. “We made good use of the conditions … kept them to 160, which is chaseable.”

It’s been a disastrous start for captain Babar Azam’s Pakistan as they face arch-rivals India in New York on Sunday.

“All the credit goes to America,” said Babur, adding that the Americans did well in their batting, bowling and fielding departments, which is why they won.

“We didn’t play well in the first six overs. We picked up the pace but successive wickets hurt us.

Overshadowed by a tight game in Texas, Scotland booked their place in Group B with a five-wicket win over Namibia at the Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados. Namibia made 155-9 before Scotland reached the winning score with 9 balls to spare.

At Grand Prairie the sport went the full distance, and more.

Jones, who scored an unbeaten 94 off 40 balls against Canada, made a comeback for the tournament’s co-hosts when he extended the match with an unbeaten 36 off 26 in the Super Over.

In subsequent balls, Jones hit Haris Rauf for a six and then a single before Nitish Kumar’s boundary.

Pakistan’s veteran fast bowler Rauf gave away 14 runs off the last six balls in the so-called “death over”.

Pakistan panicked in the super over when fast bowler Mohammad Amir conceded 18 off Shaheen Shah Afridi, including seven off wide balls as Jones hit a boundary against the left-arm seamer.

For the US, left-arm fast bowler Saurabh Netrawalkar took 2-18 from his four overs, conceding just 13 runs in the super over to seal a historic victory for the US.

The Americans stunned Pakistan when skipper Patel hit a 38-ball 50 in regulation time, and Andries Kause (35) combined to take the home side to 104-1 in 13 overs before Pakistan rallied to dismiss both men. 159-3.

Pakistan’s batting, which has struggled for a year in the shorter format of the game, was further exposed against some decent American seam bowling and was restricted to 159-7.

Steven Taylor gave the home side the perfect start when he took a brilliant catch inches away from the turf to dismiss Mohammad Rizwan off Netrawalkar.

Left-arm spin from Nostush Kenjike (3-30) put Pakistan at 26-3 in the fifth over.

Babar (44) and Shatab Khan (40) looked to regain momentum and put on 72 runs before Kenjike broke through in the 13th over. Shadab was brilliantly caught by Netrawalkar at short fine leg and the left-arm spinner caught Azam Khan leg before wicket on the first ball.

Babar, the world’s leading T20 run-scorer and eclipsed Virat Kohli’s 4,038 runs, appeared scratched in his 43-ball delivery before falling lbw to Jasdeep Singh in the 16th over as Pakistan slipped to 125-6.

Shaheen Shah Afridi’s 16-ball 23, including two sixes, only boosted Pakistan’s tally.

Scotland wins

Captain Richie Berrington scored an unbeaten 47 off 35 balls and shared a fifth-wicket stand of 74 with Michael Leask (35 off 17) to guide Scotland to their first win over Namibia in four T20 Internationals.

Scotland took a point from their opening game against England, which was abandoned due to rain, and now sit in Group B with three points, ahead of Australia and Namibia with two points each. Namibia beat Oman in Super Over in their first match.

Australia will face England on Saturday.

Captain Gerhard Erasmus scored 52 off 30 balls and added 51 for the fifth wicket with Jane Green (28) as Namibia posted 155-9 after electing to bat.

Erasmus took 2-14, bowling the eighth and 10th overs, leaving Scotland 69-3 at the midway point of their innings as the match swung in Namibia’s favour.

But with Scotland 73-4 after 11 overs, Berrington and Leask combined to guide their side to victory.

“A lot of people have come out to see us and it’s repaid their faith,” Leask said. “I don’t think we’re going to get over it for a while. It’s a terrible feeling.”

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Andhra Cricket: https://apnews.com/hub/cricket

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