Why best of, or I should say the biggest, partnerships in twenty20 cricket is often between openers? Well, reason is simple ~ opener get the most number of overs to bat with the luxury of 6 overs of powerplay initially.
Yesterday, at Beausejour stadium in St Lucia in game 4 of T20 world cup 2010, Pakistani openers Kamran Akmal and Salman Butt became unsaperable. Pacers Mashrafe Mortaza plus Shahiful Islam as well as spinners Abdur Razzak plus Naeem Islamd failed to get their team the first wicket until captain Shakib Al Hasan brought himself into the attack. As late as in the 16th over, Kamran Akmal's innings stopped but not before he had struck 8 lusty fours and a six to individual score of 73 from 55 balls.
142 run stand between Kamran Akmal and Salman Butt is now the 3rd highest partnership in T20 matches.
Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi promoted himself to number 3 for a run a ball 9 while Abdul Razzaq and Misbah-ul-Haq finished the innings conservatively for green team at 172 for 3 wkts in 20 overs.
Bangladesh chase failed to gather momentum, losing opener Imrul Kayes in the first over and then their best batsman Tamim Iqbal by the end of power plays. former captain Mohammad Ashraful joined current captain Shakib Al Hasan and this left-right hand partnership did the repairing job very well, adding 91 runs from 89 ball.
Mohammad Ashraful, in perticular, looks to have found his lost form as he scored well in warm-ups games as well as in this first match.
51 required off last 5 overs with 7 wickets in hand, tigers were well and truly in the game but pace and accuracy of Mohammad Sami denied them a memorable win. Sami grabbed 3 wickets while his new ball partner Mohammad Aamer dismissed 2.
The scoresPakistan 172 for 3 wkts in 20 overs
K Akmal 73, S Butt 73, Al Hasan 2/27
Bangladesh 151 for 7 wkts in 20 overs
M Ashraful 65, Al Hasan 47, Md Sami 3/29.
Man of the match = Salman Butt (fewer balls).
Full scorecard : Pak v Bangladesh, World t20.
Head to headThis was 4th Pakistan vs Bangladesh t20 international and Pakistan are still unbeaten to their neighbours, winning all 4.