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Tuesday, 25 February, 2003, 15:29 GMT

Pakistan labour to victory

Pool A, Paarl: Pakistan 253-9 (50 overs) beat Holland 156 all out (39.3 overs) by 97 runs



Pakistan saw off a gritty challenge from Holland for an ultimately comfortable 97-run victory, but they were rarely convincing.

The Pakistan pace attack of Wasim Akram, Shoaib Akhtar and Waqar Younis eventually saw off the Dutch.

And Wasim was in celebratory mood as he became the first man to take 500 wickets in one-day internationals.

But Pakistan will be disappointed firstly by a tentative batting display and then by giving away 40 extras, including 17 wides and six no-balls.

After impressing with the ball, Holland's reply looked as if it might be very short-lived when they slipped to 43 for four.



Wasim made Nick Statham his 500th victim in a fascinating opening spell and struck again in the 10th over when keeper Rashid took a brilliant diving catch from Klaas van Noortwijk.

Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar also claimed wickets as Holland predictably failed to cope with Pakistan's fiery pace attack.

However, Daan van Bunge and Tim de Leede shared in a stand of 35 for the fifth wicket that raised hopes that the Dutch could at least embarrass Pakistan by batting out the 50 overs.

But once that partnership was broken, when de Leede was caught by Shoaib Akhtar off Saqlain Mushtaq, the crowd were merely left to wait and see how long Holland's resistance would last.

It was finally ended in the 40th over when Wasim collected his third wicket, umpire Steve Bucknor taking his time before adjudging Jeroen Smits lbw.



Earlier, Yousuf Youhana top scored for Pakistan with a well-paced 58 off 59 balls but Pakistan missed out on the chance to boost their confidence with the bat.

They got off to a good start, but after De Leede lured Saeed Anwar into a rash shot, the wickets began to tumble with alarming regularity.

Taufeeq Umar, who along with Abdul Razzaq fell just short of a half-century, was next to go as he was run out attempting a single that was never on.

Inzamam-ul-Haq, desperately short of confidence, failed to add his total of 10 runs at the World Cup and became De Leede's second victim.

Only Youhana really impressed as he reached his 50 by smashing a full toss through the covers before he was bowled by Holland captain Roland Lefebvre.



HAVE YOUR SAY

Sharp fielding by Holland, and poor running from the batsmen, had Pakistan struggling to speed up the run rate, which could ultimately prove crucial for Super Six qualification.

Wasim could not spark Pakistan's innings and he was also run out in farcical circumstances, trying for another single that Youhana could scarcely believe.

Shoaib, promoted from his usual number 11 following his quick-fire 43 against England, plundered 26 from 27 balls in a late flurry but it was scant consolation as none of the Pakistan batsmen could convert decent starts into centuries.

Left-arm spinner JJ Esmeijer led the bowling for Holland, conceding 35 runs from his 10-over spell.


Pakistan: Taufeeq Umar, Saeed Anwar, Abdul Razzaq, Saleem Elahi, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Yousuf Youhana, Rashid Latif, Wasim Akram, Saqlain Mushtaq, Waqar Younis (captain), Shoaib Akhtar.

Holland: Luuk van Troost, Nick Statham, Bas Zuiderent, Tim de Leede, Klaas van Noortwijk, Daan van Bunge, Henk Mol, Roland Lefebvre (captain), Jeroen Smits, JJ Esmeijer, Edgar Schiferli.



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Related to this story:

Landmark day for Lefebvre (25 Feb 03 |  Netherlands )
Over-by-over: Pakistan v Holland (25 Feb 03 |  Team Pages )
Have Your Say on the Netherlands (04 Jan 03 |  Have Your Say )
Have Your Say on Pakistan (04 Jan 03 |  Have Your Say )


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