Windies crash to historic low in heavy defeat

KARACHI, Pakistan, CMC – West Indies were dismissed for their lowest-ever total in Twenty20 Internationals in a crushing 143-run defeat to Pakistan – the second heaviest loss in T20 history – as the tourists lack of preparation and inexperience was laid bare here Sunday.

Tasked with chasing an imposing 204 in the first match of a bilateral series on Pakistani soil in nine years, the Caribbean side were embarrassingly bundled out for 60 in the 14th over, marking their only third score under three figures in the shortest format.

They were slumping at 15 for four in the fifth over and never found a saviour as only Marlon Samuels, of the top six, managed to reach double figures with a top score of 18.

The innings was rattled by the new ball pair of seamer Mohammed Amir (2-3) and left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz (2-19), while part-time off-spinner Shoaib Malik (2-13) helped polished off the Windies feeble effort.

Sent in earlier at the National Stadium in a match played under presidential-style security, the home side piled up an imposing 203 for five off their 20 overs, with debutant Hussain Talat top-scoring with 41 and opener Fakhar Zaman getting 39.

Captain Sarfraz Ahmed weighed in with 38 while veteran Shoaib arrived late on to stroke an exciting unbeaten 37.

West Indies, who arrived late Saturday via Dubai and had no practice session, were on the backfoot from early when Fakhar and Babar Azam (17) posted a lively 46 from 30 balls for the first wicket.

Seamer Rayad Emrit, in only his second T20I after making his debut last December, broke the stand when he trapped Azam lbw with a full length delivery on leg stump.

Thirteen balls later, Fakhar, who lashed six fours and a six off 24 deliveries, was run out after backing up too far at the non-striker’s end, leaving Pakistan on 65 for two in the eighth.

However, Talat and Sarfraz then combined to dent the Windies hopes of slowing the scoring, adding 75 for the third wicket off a mere 49 balls.

The 22-year-old Talat faced 37 balls and counted two fours and a six while Sarfraz punched four fours and a six in a 22-ball knock.

Talat’s demise in the 16th over saw three wickets tumble for 17 runs in the space of 11 deliveries but Shoaib once again proved his weight in gold, smashing four fours and a pair of sixes in an exhilarating 14-ball cameo, as Pakistan got 47 off 17 balls in an unbroken fourth wicket stand involving Faheem Ashraf (16 not out).

The Windies innings began with the same tone set by their bowlers. Chadwick Walton blasted the first delivery from Nawaz over the ropes at square leg but then skied the fourth ball to long-off without adding to the total.

Amir then snatched two key wickets in the second over as both Andre Fletcher and captain Jason Mohammed drove to Talat at cover in the space of three deliveries to depart without scoring.

When Denesh Ramdin, in his first match for West Indies in 18 months, whipped pacer Hasan Ali off his pads to Nawaz at mid-wicket also without scoring, the innings was descending into free fall.

Rovman Powell (5) tugged a return catch to leg-spinner Shadab Khan in the seventh over and veteran Marlon Samuels, who looked the most promising of the lot with three boundaries in a 19-ball 18, skied one from Nawaz to point at the end of the eighth over, to leave the innings in dire straits.

Emrit (11) and Keemo Paul (10 not out) held up the inevitable in an 18-run stand – the best of the innings – before Shoaib triggered the final slide.

The second match is scheduled for the same venue on Monday.

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