Pakistan batters Babar Azam and Iftikhar Ahmed recorded the third-highest partnership for any wicket in the history of the ODI Asia Cup on Wednesday.
Pakistan batters Babar Azam and Iftikhar Ahmed recorded the third-highest partnership for any wicket in the history of the ODI Asia Cup on Wednesday. The duo accomplished this during their Asia Cup 2023 campaign opener against Nepal in Multan. Iftikhar joined Babar when the team was struggling at 124/4 in 27.5 overs. From then on, they absolutely dismantled Nepal bowlers in the second half of the innings. Babar smashed 151 in 131 balls consisting of 14 fours and four sixes while Iftikhar smashed his maiden century, ending unbeaten on 109 in 71 balls, with 11 fours and four sixes.
Together, the duo added 214 runs for the fifth wicket. It is the third-highest partnership for any wicket in ODI Asia Cup history. The highest partnership is by Nasir Jamshed and Mohammed Hafeez (224 runs) against India in 2012, followed by a 223-run stand between Younis Khan and Shoaib Malik against Hong Kong in 2004.
This is also the highest fifth-wicket partnership in Asia Cup history.
This partnership between Babar and Iftikhar is also the highest partnership by a Pakistani pair for fourth wicket or below.
Iftikhar’s century came in just 67 balls, this is the fourth-fastest century by a Pakistan batter, with the fastest being by Shahid Afridi in just 37 balls.
Coming to the match, opting to bat first, Pakistan put on 342/6 in their 50 overs. Pakistan was reduced to 25/2 after Fakhar Zaman (14) and Imam-Ul-Haq (5) were dismissed.
Babar then had an 86-run stand for the third wicket with Mohammed Rizwan (44 in 50 balls, with six fours) which helped Pakistan get to three figures. After the quick dismissals of Rizwan and Agha Salman (5), Pakistan was left struggling at 124/4 and from then on Babar and Iftikhar helped Pakistan recover.
Later, Nepal got bundled out for 104 after Shadab Khan took a three-wicket haul. Apart from him, Shaheen Afridi and Haris Rauf took two wickets each.