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Afridi's fifer clinches historic ODI for Pakistan

Pakistan win by seven wickets after Shahid's fifer restricts minnows to 195 in the historic ODI

Pakistan beat Afghanistan by seven wickets in the first-ever one-day international between the two countries at Sharjah Stadium yesterday. Leg-spinner Shahid Afridi took 5-36 to restrict Afghanistan to 195 before Pakistan romped home in the 38th over with Younis Khan hitting an unbeaten 70 and Imran Farhat scoring 52.

Shahid Afridi
Shahid Afridi celebrates the wicket of Afghanistan captain Nawroz
Mangal at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium yesterday. Pic/AFP


Afridi took four wickets in his first spell to derail Afghanistan -- who won the toss and batted -- from 54-1 to 101-5 before finishing with 5-36 in his 10 overs. Afridi also became the second spinner with the highest one-day wickets (338) behind Muttiah Muralitharan (534), surpassing India's Anil Kumble who had 333 wickets.

But despite Afridi's brilliance, the Afghan batsmen put up an excellent show and had they not lacked experience -- playing their first one-day international against a top nation -- they would have scored more.

Plenty of fireworks
There was plenty of fireworks on and off the field as Afghan batsmen hit six sixes during their innings which delighted the bumper 15,000-strong weekend crowd -- mostly Pakistan and Afghan expats. Paceman Umar Gul provided Pakistan with the early breakthrough when he caught Noor Ali (nine) off his own bowling. Gul and Wahab Riaz took two wickets each. 

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