Matthews wraps up tour in style as West Indies women thrash Pakistan – Sport

KARACHI: West Indies captain Hayley Matthews wrapped up a memorable visit to Pakistan for herself and her team with another scintillating performance as they thrashed the visitors by eight wickets in the fifth and final Twenty20 International here at the National Bank Stadium on Friday.

Leading from the front, Matthews showcased her batting prowess with a scintillating 78 runs off just 59 balls as West Indies chased down the 135-run target set by Pakistan with 10 balls to spare.

The right-hander’s innings was filled with powerful strokes, including 11 boundaries, as she dictated terms to the Pakistani bowling attack. She was dismissed by Sadia Iqbal, but when the West Indies needed only seven runs to win.

Earlier, opener Rashada Williams provided a solid start with a quickfire 16, while Shemaine Campbelle remained unbeaten on 33 to guide West Indies to victory alongside Matthews. Zaida James contributed a handy seven not out to seal the win with 10 balls to spare.

It was Matthews’ fifth score of fifty or more during the tour which features three ODIs and five T20Is. She hit two centuries in the longer format.

For Pakistan, Sadia Iqbal managed to claim the only wicket to fall, dismissing Williams, but struggled to contain Matthews’ onslaught. Despite economical spells from Nashra Sandhu and Rameen Shamim, Pakistan failed to break the Matthews-Campbelle partnership, ultimately conceding the match.

Opting to bat first, Pakistan’s innings witnessed a mix of aggressive strokes and calculated partnerships. Opener Ayesha Zafar set the tone with a blistering 22 off just 16 deliveries before being dismissed by Qiana Joseph. Zafar’s attacking intent provided Pakistan with the initial momentum.

Following Zafar’s departure, Sidra Ameen steadied the ship with a composed innings, notching up a crucial 48 off 52 balls. Her partnership with Muneeba Ali (25) proved pivotal in building a solid foundation for the innings. However, a flurry of wickets, including that of Pakistan captain Nida Dar (2) and Gull Feroza (4), halted Pakistan’s progress momentarily.

The middle order faced some quick blows, with Afy Fletcher proving to be particularly menacing, claiming three vital wickets for the West Indies. However, Rameen Shamim’s unbeaten 16 towards the end injected some late momentum into Pakistan’s innings.

Fletcher, supported by the likes of Joseph and Matthews, maintained pressure on the Pakistani batters, but Pakistan managed to keep the scoreboard ticking, ultimately reaching a total of 134-8 at the end of their allotted 20 overs.

Scores in brief:

PAKISTAN 134-8 in 20 overs (Sidra Ameen 48, Muneeba Ali 25; Afy Fletcher 3-17); WEST INDIES 136-2 in 18.2 overs (Hayley Matthews 78, Shemaine Campbelle 33; Sadia Iqbal 1-24).

Published in Dawn, May 4th, 2024

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