Pakistan’s allrounder Mohammed Hafeez expressed his joy over winning the “Man of the Match” award for the first time over his record performance in the second Twenty20 International against West Indies on Saturday.
The record spell by Hafeez helped Pakistan surmount the late batting juggernaut of the hosts from Nicholas Pooran. Hafeez pulled off throwing one of the most economical spells in the history of T20 internationals.
“It’s my first Man of the Match award as a bowler. I will always remember it,” said the 40-year-old cricketer after handing the victory to his side in the second faceoff of the four-match T2OI series in Guyana.
“The win accorded the team with a boost to their morale.” He also hoped that the green shirts will seal a victory in today’s [Sunday’s] match to win the series.
Hafeez also showered accolades on his fellow bowlers. “Shadab bowled really well, and Shaheen’s last over, he nailed his yorkers,” he said.
The eclectic bowler praised skipper Babar Azam, saying, “The caption also bucked me up.”
The right-arm off-break bowler said Pakistan was short of ten to 15 runs in its total. “Our batting is capable enough to pile up a 180-run total,” he asserted.
Hence, the team needs further improvement as a batting unit, he said. But, as the bowling unit, the team performed quite well, he remarked.
Dilating on the Pakistan strategy in the Caribbean country, Hafeez said, “We knew the conditions were tough for the batsmen against spinners.”
Hafeez attributed his excellent bowling performance in the match to having played the CPL. “I really tried to execute my skills and it worked well for me,” he said.
“I’m more comfortable bowling to left-handers and I believe I put them under more pressure, but you still have to nail your lengths.”
With newfound confidence, the green shirts will hit the ground today in the third twenty20 international against the hosts in Guyana.