A determined effort by Pakistan’s tail order was not enough as the Aussies got back to winning ways. David Warner’s 15th ODI hundred set the rhythm for the side who went on to pick up the two crucial points.
The rain seemed to be the focal subject rather than cricket since the outcome of the previous two games. But the rain gods seemed to grant mercy as the action unfolded without any interruptions.
In a surprising move, both teams opted to play with only four frontline bowlers with the fifth bowler remaining a mystery. Under cold and overcast conditions, Pakistan won the toss and opted to bowl first.
The Asian side, however, failed to take advantage of the conditions as the Aussie batsmen got settled in quite comfortably. Aaron Finch’s rich vein of form against Pakistan continued with a knock of 82 which saw him share a 146 run stand with Warner at the top.
Warner shortly reached his ton and with wickets in hand, the defending champions were well on course towards a total of 350. Mohammad Amir had other plans as he proceeded to wipe out the Aussie batting line-up with his maiden five-wicket haul in ODI cricket.
From 223-2, the batting side collapsed to 307 all out. Chasing 308, Pakistan were not off to the greatest of starts by losing Fakhar Zaman for a duck. While Imam-ul-Haq, Babar Azam and Mohammad Hafeez struck vital contributions, the middle order could not deliver leaving the captain a huge task with the tail by his side.
The tail order played fearless cricket to give the Aussies a scare. Hasan Ali and Wahab Riaz played explosive knocks to steer the side close to the target, however, a double-wicket over by Starc turned things right around. Sarfaraz Ahmed’s run out was the final nail in the coffin as Australians walked away with a 41-run victory.