Imam ul Haq (File Photo) © Getty Images
Imam ul Haq (File Photo) © Getty Images

Pakistan opener Imam ul Haq scored his second international hundred as Pakistan reached 308 for 7 in the opening ODI against Zimbabwe at Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo. Imam reached a career best 128, while Fakhar Zaman continued his good run of form with 60 and debutant Asif Ali cracked a rapid 46 in the middle order to boost Pakistan’s total.

Pakistan started slowly with the bat, Zimbabwe putting them in under grey, wintery skies. With the new ball nipping around, Imam played and missed at several deliveries and was lucky to survive an edge off fast bowler Blessing Muzarabani, the ball dropping just in front of second slip. He did enough to survive, however, and with Fakhar scoring fluently Pakistan put on an opening stand of 113 in under 25 overs.

Fakhar eventually hit a return catch to debutant off spinner Liam Roche, but Imam shifted through the gears to bring up a 109-ball hundred in the 37th over. Zimbabwe’s bowlers struck back at the death, picking up regular wickets to stall Pakistan’s charge.

Tendai Chatara and Donald Tiripano picked up two apiece, as Pakistan lost five wickets in the last 10 overs. Asif Ali struck two sixes and four fours to ensure Pakistan passed 300 to set a challenging total.