Afridi stars for Pakistan as Gayle hammers England

Shahid Afridi produced a superb all-round display to get Pakistan's World T20 bid off to a flying start in India.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 16th March 2016, 6:14 pm
Updated Wednesday, 16th March 2016, 6:19 pm
Shahid Afridi. Picture: Robin Jones
Shahid Afridi. Picture: Robin Jones

But Reece Topley was powerless to prevent England slumping to a six-wicket defeat at the hands of the West Indies in their group one opener.

Afridi, who will return to Hampshire for the NatWest Blast T20 this summer, skippered Pakistan to a 55-run triumph over Bangladesh in Kolkata.

And he led by example in the group two success.

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The 36-year-old smashed four fours and four sixes on his way to 49 from just 19 balls as his side posted 201 for five in their 20 overs.

Afridi then took two for 27 as Pakistan restricted their rivals to 146 for six in reply.

He said: ‘My performances play a key role but I was hungry.

‘I was keen to perform well for my country in this event.

‘It’s a big event as captain, as senior player, I had to lead by example.

‘Captaincy is not an easy job but when the team gives me 100 per cent, I enjoy it.

‘People expect me to bat and bowl as well and I enjoy both.’

There was little to cheer in the England camp, however, after Chris Gayle hammered them into submission in Mumbai.

Having posted a competitive 182 for six in their 20 overs, Eoin Morgan’s men could not contain the West Indies opener as he steered his side home with 11 balls to spare.

Gayle managed the chase perfectly and finished with 100 off 48 balls, with five fours and 11 sixes.

Hampshire left-armer Topley took one for 22 from 2.1 overs.

His Ageas Bowl team-mates James Vince and Liam Dawson were not selected for the opening fixture.