Cardiff, June 15: Riding over disciplined bowling performance followed by an aggressive batting by the top order, Pakistan defeated England by 8 wickets on Wednesday (June 14) and booked a ticket to their maiden ICC Champions Trophy final.
Chasing a below-par target of 212, Pakistan reached home for the loss of two wickets with 77 balls to spare and stun title favourites England.
Pakistan, thus, became first finalists of the 50-over ICC event and they will face the winners of semi-final 2, scheduled to be held between India and Bangladesh.
Earlier, Pakistan bowlers led by Hasan Ali put up a quality display to restrict England to 211 runs in 49.5 overs. Ali was complimented well by Junaid Khan and debutant Rumman Raees, who chipped in with two wickets each.
Chasing a below-par 212, the Green Brigade rode on a brilliant 118-run opening stand between Azhar Ali (76) and Fakhar Zaman (57) before Babar Azam (38 not out) and Ali helped the team with a 55-run second wicket stand to set their date with the winner of the second semi-final.
Pakistan outclassed hosts England in every department of the match and proved every cricket pundit's prediction wrong after storming into the final.
Here are some of the Oppo Moments of the Match:
1) Rumman Raees gets his first ODI wicket
Left arm-pacer made his debut for Pakistan in the match against England and made it count by getting his maiden ODI wicket. He removed Alex Hales for 13.
Hales aimed something expansive over the infield, but didn't get enough bat into his stroke, the blade turned on impact and gave a comfortable catch to Babar Azam. Hales' dismissal brought some cheer on the face of the debutant who was denied his first wicket via DRS. This was the first Oppo Moment of the match.
2) Hasan Ali becomes leading wicket-taker of the tournament
Hasan Ali once again produced a clinical bowling performance in the tournament and finished his quota of 10 overs at an economy of 3.5 runs per over. He also picked up three important wickets in the innings and thus became the leading wicket-taker in the tournament. Ali has 10 scalps to his name in 4 matches.
The right-arm medium pacer got the important wickets of Jonny Bairstow (43), Eoin Morgan (33) and Ben Stokes (34) to bring his team at the top against favourites England. The way he tricked Morgan by forcing him to play an outside ball and edging towards the wicketkeeper was the Oppo Moment of the match.
3) Fakhar Zaman slams second consecutive fifty
Young Fakhar Zaman's second consecutive fifty in the tournament set the tone for Pakistan as they comfortably chased down a below-par score of 212 against England.
He smashed his fifty off 49 balls and the second one in a must win match. Zaman scored 58-ball 57 before getting stumped by Jos Buttler off Adil Rashid. His knock comprised 7 fours and a six and gave Pakistan a solid opening start. With the help of a Azhar Ali's innings at the other end Zaman put up an opening stand of 118.
This was only his 3rd ODI innings. He had made his 50-over international debut against South Africa last week. Zaman's fifty was another Oppo Moment of the match.
4) Azhar Ali slams second fifty of the tournament, 11th overall
Pakistan opener Azhar Ali top-scored (76 off 100 balls) from both the teams. Ali's match-winning fifty was his second of the tournament and helped Pakistan seal a convincing victory against England. It was the 11th ODI fifty from the right-handed batsman, who has slammed 25 half-centuries in Tests. It was also an Oppo Moment of the match.
5) Winning runs come from Mohammed Hafeez's bat
Mohammed Hafeez cracked Ben Stokes towards the fence to hit the winning runs for his team in the 38th over. With this boundary, Pakistan registered an emphatic eight-wicket victory over England and entered their maiden Champions Trophy final. The winning runs coming from Hafeez's bat was the final Oppo moment of the match.
A fan at the stadium
A Fan takes selfie with OPPO F3 phone at the stadium during Pakistan and England match.