Pakistan on top of the world with New Zealand T20 series win

In this file photo, Pakistan’s Haris Sohail bats as New Zealand’s Tom Latham, left, looks on during the fourth one-day international cricket match between New Zealand and Pakistan at Seddon Park in Hamilton on Jan. 16, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 28 January 2018

Pakistan on top of the world with New Zealand T20 series win

MOUNT MAUNGANUI, New Zealand: Pakistan laid claim to being the best Twenty20 side in the world Sunday after beating New Zealand in the series-deciding third Twenty20 match in Mount Maunganui.
The 18-run victory gave Pakistan a come-from-behind 2-1 series win that will see them overtake New Zealand at the top of the world rankings.
Captain Sarfraz Ahmed leapt with delight after the final ball as Pakistan pulled off back-to-back wins over the hosts.
Batting first on a friendly wicket, Pakistan reached 181 for six with Fakhar Zaman making 46 off 36 at the top of the innings. Umar Amin led a late charge that saw 58 runs scored in the final four overs.
New Zealand, in reply, were never up with the run chase, and managed 163 for six in their 20 overs.
The defeat followed a 48-run loss in the second game, after New Zealand swept the one-day series and won the first T20.
The consecutive defeats, following an unbeaten 13-match winning streak across all formats against the West Indies and Pakistan, put a dampener on New Zealand’s preparation for next month’s triangular series with Australia and England.
Zaman was the architect at the start of the Pakistan innings with a sharp 46 before being dismissed in a debatable decision when Tom Bruce took a catch at ground level.
Television replays were inconclusive on whether the ball touched the grass, and after lengthy deliberations the third umpire ruled in favor of the on-field decision.
New Zealand managed to arrest Pakistan’s brisk early run rate in the middle of the innings before Amin ensured a competitive total at the end.
The 28-year-old left-hander smacked his 21 off the first five balls in an over from Ish Sodhi before the New Zealand spinner claimed the wicket off his final delivery.
Haris Sohail chipped in with 20 off 12 balls while Aamer Yamin, replacing the injured Hasan Ali, faced six deliveries for his 15.
New Zealand struggled from the start of their reply to get near the required run rate of more than nine an over, and were in early trouble when Faheem Ashraf claimed Kane Williamson for nine.
Martin Guptill attempted to bully the bowlers but it was primarily a lone stand. When he was removed for 59 off 43 balls in the 13th over, the required run rate had shot up to 13.57.
Ross Taylor put the ball over the boundary fence three times in his 25 off 10 balls.
But with his dismissal in the 17th over, New Zealand were 128 for five and their hopes of a miraculous comeback were over.


Lewandowski scores 30th goal of season as Bayern close on title

Updated 07 June 2020

Lewandowski scores 30th goal of season as Bayern close on title

  • Bayern struck twice in quick succession just before half-time to turn the game in their favor

BERLIN: Robert Lewandowski scored his 30th league goal of the season on Saturday as Bayern Munich came from behind to claim a 4-2 victory at Bayer Leverkusen and move a step closer to the Bundesliga title.

After Lucas Alario secured an early lead for the home side, Bayern struck twice in quick succession just before half-time to turn the game in their favor after Kingsley Coman’s equalizer.

Lewandowski netted in the second half as Bayern established a 10-point lead over title rivals Borussia Dortmund, who host Hertha Berlin later on Saturday.

The game also saw Bayern lend their support to protests over the death of black American man George Floyd, with all their players wearing armbands bearing the slogan “Black Lives Matter.”

With their talisman and Bayern transfer target Kai Havertz ruled out with a muscle injury, Leverkusen turned to Alario to lead the line against the champions.

The Argentine delivered after just 9 minutes, beating the offside trap after a throw-in to slot the ball past Manuel Neuer.

A mistake from Moussa Diaby allowed Coman to curl in the equalizer, before a fizzing shot from Leon Goretzka and an elegant lob from Serge Gnabry saw Bayern take a 2-goal lead before half-time.

Lewandowski finished the job with a well-placed header after the break, reaching the 30-goal mark for only the second time in his Bundesliga career, but there was still time for 17-year-old Florian Wirtz to curl in a consolation goal for Leverkusen before the final whistle.

Elsewhere, a late equalizer from Christian Strohdiek gave bottom-of-the-table Paderborn a faint glimmer of hope in the race for survival, as they snatched a 1-1 draw away to RB Leipzig.

Chelsea-bound Leipzig striker Timo Werner set up Patrik Schick on 27 minutes to give Leipzig the lead, but they were forced to defend it with 10 men after Dayot Upamecano was booked twice in the first half.

Strohdiek’s last-minute strike gave Paderborn their fourth draw in five games, though Steffen Baumgart’s side remain 8 points off Fortuna Duesseldorf who occupy the relegation playoff place.

Duesseldorf themselves missed the chance to move toward safety, as they battled to a dramatic 2-2 draw against 10-man Hoffenheim.

A headed opener from Rouwen Hennings and a red card for Hoffenheim’s Benjamin Huebner put the home side in pole position, but the visitors struck back with goals from Munas Dabbur and Steven Zuber before Hennings saved a point with a late penalty.

Uwe Roesler’s side remain 3 points adrift of survival, after goals from Moussa Niakhate and Pierre Kunde Malong gave fellow strugglers Mainz a rare 2-0 win over local rivals Eintracht Frankfurt.