Ayesha Naseem spearheads Pakistan’s seven-wicket win

Ayesha Naseem smashed a scintillating unbeaten 45 to help Pakistan register a seven-wicket win over Sri Lanka in the second T20I at the Southend Club, Karachi on Tuesday. The victory sealed a series win for Pakistan with the third and final match of the series to be played on Saturday. The Bismah Maroof-led hosts had won the first match by six wickets on Tuesday.

On Thursday evening, Ayesha, later adjudged player-of-the-match, took the attack to the Sri Lankan bowlers as Pakistan made light work of the 103-run target despite the early loss of three wickets. Ayesha’s 45 came off 31 balls and included five fours and one six.

The right-hander added 70 runs for the fourth-wicket in 58 balls with Bismah who returned not out on 22 off 29 balls (one four). Pakistan registered the victory when Ayesha hit a four with 17 balls to spare.

Earlier, Sri Lankan captain Chamari Athapaththu won the toss for the second consecutive time and like Tuesday, opted to bat first. Anam Amin who had dismissed Athapaththu in the first game made the big breakthrough again today by sending the left-hander back to the dressing room for five. Oshadi Ranasinghe fell for eight to Nida Dar to leave Sri Lanka wobbling at 28 for two after 7.1 overs.

Hasini Perera added 34 for the third-wicket with Nilakshi de Silva, Perera who top-scored for the tourists with 35 off 51 balls (three fours) was dismissed by leg-spinner Tuba Hassan.

Sri Lankan batters failed to break the shackles throughout the innings as they finished their 20 overs for a paltry 102 for six. For Pakistan, Tuba, Anam, Nida, Fatima Sana and Aimen Anwar all took a wicket apiece.

Tuba who picked the player-of-the-match award in her debut on Tuesday had another excellent outing with the ball as she conceded a mere 13 runs in her four overs while accounting for Perera.

Scores in brief:

Pakistan beat Sri Lanka by seven wickets

Sri Lanka 102 for 6, 20 overs (Hasini Perera 35, Nilakshi de Silva 22; Tuba Hassan 1-13, Anam Amin 1-16)

Pakistan 104 for 3, 17.1 overs (Ayesha Naseem 45 not out, Bismah Maroof 22 not out; Achini Kulasuriya 1-11)

Player-of-the-match: Ayesha Naseem