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ICC World T20 2014: Pakistan spinners were key against Australia, says Mohammad Hafeez

Mohammad Hafeez was pleased at the way Pakistani spinners performed against Australia © Getty Images
Mohammad Hafeez was pleased at the way Pakistani spinners performed against Australia © Getty Images

Mirpur: Mar 23, 2014

Pakistan skipper Mohammad Hafeez was pleased with the performance of his spinners on Sunday and was effusive in his praise for Umar Akmal for his match-winning 54-ball 94 which set up their 16-run victory over Australia in the ICC World Twenty20.

Put into bat, Umar blasted a breathtaking 94 laced with nine boundaries and four sixes to power Pakistan to 191 for five in their stipulated 20 overs.

All-rounder Glenn Maxwell then conjured up hopes of a successful run-chase for Australia as he smashed a devastating 33-ball 74 but Pakistani spinners brought their team back into the game with some good bowling.

“There was moment in the match when Maxwell was batting brilliantly and at that stage the only thing I could tell my bowlers was just go there and keep attacking and I think they did a good job, especially spinners, like Zulfiqar Babar.

Saeed Ajmal and Shahid Afridi did really well,” said Hafeez after the match.

“The strength of Pakistan is we have too many match winners and anybody can win the match for us and Umar Akmal showed a great talent. We always wanted him to express himself. He held his nerve very well. He attacked and that’s what we wanted our boys to do. He has got great talent and he was simply unbelievable,” he added.

Australian captain, George Bailey also praised Pakistan spinners and was disappointed with his fielders.

“The start we had, 40 for 2 after seven overs, I’d have taken that. You just try and play your best bowlers and Pakistan’s spinners bowled very very well and also Umar Gul in the death,” he said.

“Batting and bowling go either way, but fielding was in our hands and we’ve set high standards and we didn’t do well. This is probably from our point of view the most disappointing aspect of our game,” he said.

Umar Akmal, adjudged Man of the Match, said he played his natural game and dedicated the award to his brother Kamran.

“I want to thank the management because they gave me a free hand. I played as positive as I could. They’ve trusted me to play at No.4 and I too prefer this position. I just played my natural game. I would like to continue building more innings,” said Umar, who blasted nine boundaries and four sixes in his 70-ball innings.

“I would like to dedicate the award to my brother Kamran Akmal who is making a comeback in the team in the World cup,” he added.

ICC World T20 2014 Points Table and Team Standings

ICC World T20 2014 Schedule details

India tour of Australia 2014, Practice matches

Nov 24, 2014 (05:29 IST)   at Glenelg, Adelaide

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Nov 26, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Sharjah

England tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 26, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Colombo

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 26, 2014 (12:00 IST)   at Dhaka

India tour of Australia 2014, Practice matches

Nov 28, 2014 (05:29 IST)   at Adelaide

More

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 24, 2014  at Colombo

Hong Kong won by 2 wkts

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 23, 2014  at Chittagong

Bangladesh won by 68 runs

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 23, 2014  at Sydney

Australia won by 2 wickets (D/L method)

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 22, 2014  at Dambulla

Match abandoned without a ball being bowled

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 21, 2014  at Dambulla

Match abandoned without a ball being bowled

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