Haris Sohail returned to form with a breezy knock of 89 off 59 balls as Pakistan put up 308-7 in a must-win World Cup fixture against South Africa on Sunday.
At Lord’s — which hosted the first game of the tournament — the 30-year-old Sohail smashed nine boundaries and three sixes to bolster Pakistan’s batting revival.
The seasoned campaigner was benched after Pakistan’s tournament opener against the West Indies, and facing a rather formidable South African pace attack, Haris proved a point.
He added 81 runs for the fourth wicket with Babar Azam — who scored 69 off 80 balls — and topped that with a brisk 71-run stand with Imad Wasim. Both the partnerships proved effective for his team.
With South Africa failing to tighten things, Pakistan piled up 91 runs in the last ten overs.
Opting to bat, Pakistan got off to a steady start with its openers — Fakhar Zaman and Imam-ul-Haq — stitching a 81-run partnership. However, both of them fell six short of their respective half-centuries.
With the openers looking confident against the pacers, it was spin ace, Imran Tahir, who dismissed the two. In the process, Imran Tahir with 39 scalps went past Allan Donald as the highest wicket-taker for the Proteas at World Cups.
South Africa’s pace ace, Kagiso Rabada, proved expensive — giving away 65 runs in 10 overs — Lungi Ngidi scalped three for 64, but that was not enough to put the pressure back on Pakistan.