Men in Green take a 2-0 lead in the five-match series
Pakistan have defeated Zimbabwe by nine wickets in the second ODI at Bulawayo, which helps them take a 2-0 lead in the five-match series.
Fakhar Zaman’s second ODI century kept Pakistan in cruise control while chasing a target of 195 runs. Zaman and Imamul Haq provided the Men in Green with a century stand at the top of the order to pave the side’s path to victory.
Imam was unfortunate to be run out after scoring 44 runs off 51 balls. His innings included four boundaries.
Despite losing his partner after a 119-run stand, Zaman stuck to the task and scored a well-crafted hundred. His unbeaten 117-run knock included 16 fours.
Earlier Zimbabwe were dismissed for 194 in the final over of the innings, after winning the toss and electing to bat first.
The home side did not have the brightest of starts as both their openers — Chamu Chibhabha and Brian Chari — were sent packing by pacer Usman Khan with just 18 runs on the board.
Captain Hamilton Masakadza then joined hands with Tarisai Musakanda to form a 62-run partnership — highest in the innings — to keep Zimbabwe in hunt for a decent target.
But as soon as Musakanda fell after scoring 24 runs, Zimbabwe kept on losing wickets at regular intervals — which kept Pakistan in the ascendancy.
Masakadza was dismissed after scoring 59 runs off 75 balls which included five fours and two sixes.
PJ Moor was the only other player who held up one end — in a faltering batting display — with a labored half century off 86 balls.
For Pakistan Usman Khan was the pick of the bowlers with wickets at both the front and backend of the innings. He picked up four wickets for 36 runs in his full quota of ten overs.
Fast bowler Hasan Ali also picked up three wickets while off-spinner Shoaib Malik also chipped in with a solitary wicket.
Zimbabwe captain Masakadza: "Tough day in the office. I got out at the wrong time trying to up the game, but the target was never going to be enough. We're losing wickets at crucial times, and also not rotating the strike enough. They've played our spinners really well, and with such a score, it was always going to be difficult for our bowlers. Hopefully we can put up a better performance, and make the series competitive."
Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed: "Thanks to Allah. Shenwari bowled brilliantly, but Fakhar and Babar did the job for us. Usman's bowled really well after his injury. He also took five wickets against Sri Lanka on a flat surface earlier and is getting better day by day. We are lacking a bit in the fielding, but otherwise we are doing very good. Chances of a couple of team shuffling, but first we want to win the series."
Player of the match Fakhar Zaman: "If you are in form, and you are giving your 100%, then the runs will come. Trying my level best, and doing well. I should utilise my good form. Today I was trying to go till the end. Tried with Imam, he was unlucky (smiles) but I wanted to stay till the end. Batting was easy in both innings."