All-round Hafeez sinks Zimbabwe again

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Mohammad Hafeez continued his rich run of form with both bat and ball to propel Pakistan to a five-run win and series triumph in Sunday's final Twenty20 International against Zimbabwe in Harare.

Tatenda Taibu took the game down to the wire – the final ball of the match, in fact – but ultimately there was no upstaging another fine all-round performance from Mohammad Hafeez as Pakistan landed a five-run win and two-nil series victory in Sunday's final Twenty20 International in Harare.

Chasing a staunch target after Hafeez's second half-ton on the trot had propelled the tourists to a total of 141 for seven, the hosts were dead in the water at 71 for six before Elton Chigumbura and Taibu hauled their side back into the contest.

Arguably complacent for the first time on tour, the visiting attack quickly found their in-roads through the opposition order derailed by Chigumbura and Taibu's big-hitting heroics. The former captains' 38-run stand for the seventh wicket at a rate of 8.76 to the over had Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq clambering for bowlers to deliver success and, why Hafeez's figures of three for 14 were not afforded a fourth and final over, only Misbah will know.

Chigumbura's 24-run cameo was stopped in its tracks by Sohail Tanvir, who sent down a good penultimate over to the match to leave Taibu chasing 20 runs from the humdinger's final six deliveries. He could only muster 14 more to his 37 not out as Sohail Khan held his nerve.

Earlier Hafeez picked up on the ruch run of form that brought him the third limited-overs ton of the year in the ODI series and a fine 71 in the first T20I, with the talented batsman top-scoring on 51 amid a string of otherwise indifferent batting.

Umar Akmal was next best with 28 and shared in a brisk 59-run stand with Hafeez, while Kyle Jarvis was the pick of the home bowlers with figures of three for 14.

The hosts made one change to their starting XI by replacing fast bowler Chris Mpofu with spinner Prosper Utseya, while the visitors went with Junaid Khan ahead of fellow seamer Aizaz Cheema.

Seven wickets and 122 runs in two matches, it was little wonder that spinning all-rounder Hafeez was named Man of the Series.

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