Imam century, bowlers stun Zimbabwe


–Pakistan win by 201 runs in first ODI

–Shadab claims career-best figures with 4 for 32

BULAWAYO: Pakistan beat Zimbabwe by 201 runs in the first one-day international at Queens Sports Club on Friday.

Opener Imamul Haq scored his second international hundred as Pakistan reached 308 for 7 against Zimbabwe.

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 offspinner 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.