He is turning on the heat. He was poor initially in the tournament but boy, he is shining on the big day. After fighting his way to a half-century, Short opens up against Hasan Ali and smashes him for successive sixes to round off the 15th over. Australia have all the momentum going their way now going into the final five overs. Short is batting on 76.
Pakistan fight back
This is exactly what we were looking forward to see. Short helps hiimself to a half-century but Shadab strikes again with Maxwell finding long on. This is going to bring the middle order into the fray now and they will have to step up in order to make use of this brilliant start by Australia. Stoinis is the new man in
They badly needed that wicket! And it is the legspinner Shadab Khan who provides them the breakthrough by getting rid of the dangerous Finch. He had already belted him over long on for a huge six earlier in the over and he wanted to smash this delivery that was bowled fairly short. Instead, he picks the debutant Farhan at cover. Australia are 96/1 after ten overs.
Darcy Short looking the goods #wacaboys #AUSvPAK
— Stuey (@MrStustar) July 8, 2018
Powerplay to Australia
Only 29 runs came in the first four overs with both Short and Finch struggling for timing but things have changed dramatically in the final two overs of the powerplay. Both batsmen have found some luck and they have made use of it with some boundaries. Australia are 54 for no loss in six overs.
How costly is that going to be? Aaron Finch is the man they wanted and they could have had him first ball as he miscued one but the veteran Shoaib Malik, who is usually a safe fielder, fails to take this. Not the easiest of chances though as it went miles up in the air. And then next ball, it appears like Short gets a reprieve as well. A short ball bowled at the ribs, the batsman seems to inside edge it to the first slip where the fielder drops it. Wow!
Toss – Australia opt to bat
So the Australians have brought D’Arcy Short back into the equation. With Nic Maddinson not finding runs, the team management opts to give Short another opportunity. Expect some spinners in action right at the start. For Pakistan, Sahibzada Farhan comes in for Haris Sohail. Let’s see if Farhan can impress on debut.
Pakistan (Playing XI): Fakhar Zaman, Sahibzada Farhan, Hussain Talat, Shoaib Malik, Sarfraz Ahmed(w/c), Asif Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi
Australia (Playing XI): Aaron Finch(c), D Arcy Short, Alex Carey(w), Travis Head, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Jack Wildermuth, Ashton Agar, Andrew Tye, Jhye Richardson, Billy Stanlake
Both sides have beaten each other so far in the tournament and now the winner will take the title today. Australia and Pakistan have their own share of concerns but managed to register victories over the hosts. And when they faced each other, the fortunes were contrasting. Billy Stanlake blew Pakistan away when they played each other first and in the next clash, the Pakistan batting lineup fired in unison with the bowlers putting up a clinical show. The bowling attack has been further strengthened by the inclusion of Mohammad Amir.
The big question however is how the Australian middle order will fare against this strong bowling attack. They have been over-reliant on Aaron Finch at the top of the order and if Pakistan can get rid of him right at the start, then the Aussies will find themselves under the pump very early. The conditions are quite chilly and the surface is expected to be on the slower side with all six games being played at the same venue within a week. Welcome to the live blog for the final of this tri-series, send in your opinions to @Narbavi and have them featured here.
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