Photograph:( AFP )
Pakistani cricketer Asif Ali came very close to hitting Afghanistan’s bowler Fareed Ahmed during their fiery clash in the Asia Cup 2022
Pakistan qualified for the Asia Cup final after beating Afghanistan by one wicket at the Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium
They needed 11 runs off the last over, with Naseem Shah hitting two consecutive sixes in the final over to take Pakistan into the finals.
Babar Azam had won the toss and chose to bowl first, as Afghanistan could only make 129/6
Pakistan started their innings in an impressive fashion, but then fell into a collapse losing back-to-back wickets
Altercation between Asif Ali and Fareed Ahmed Malik
In the 19th over with two balls remaining, Asif Ali hit Fareed Ahmed Malik for a six but got out to Fareed in the very next ball
Not only did Fareed dismiss Asif, but he also went straight to confront the batter, and performed a fist pump to celebrate the wicket
However, Asif did not like Fareed’s actions, and he raised his bat, but then started walking away. The bowler gave Asif a mouthful of send-off with the choicest of words.
This sent Asif Ali into a rage as he tried to punch Fareed and also threatened to hit Fareed with the bat, emulating Javed Miandad who had similarly almost hit Dennis Lillee with the bat during a Test match as well. The umpires, the Afghan players, and the Pakistani batter separated the two to avoid physical alteration.
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Pakistan’s win meant that India and Afghanistan are out of the reckoning for the final to be played on Sunday as they are winless from two matches.
Babar Azam gives his thoughts on the match
At the post-match presentation, Pakistan skipper Babar said, “To be honest, the dressing room was very tense. ”
The team was walking in and out of the dressing room. Excellent with the way Naseem Shah finished it off. Sharjah is always low-scoring, and Mujeeb and Rashid Khan are two of the best bowlers. We just wanted to take the match deep.” Babar said
“The way we started with the ball was excellent. In our batting, we didn’t execute our plans very well, but Naseem was outstanding. At the back of my mind, I have seen Naseem play like this earlier, and I had the belief in him. This moment reminds me of Javed Miandad’s six. We would like to continue this momentum and not repeat our mistakes. Every day is a different day, and we would like to take it day by day.” he said
With four points each, Pakistan and Sri Lanka qualified for the title clash.