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Pakistan Keeps Semi-Final Hopes Alive in ICC World Cup 2023

In a thrilling turn of events at the ongoing ICC World Cup 2023, Pakistan has managed to keep their semi-final hopes alive. The Green Shirts, led by Babar Azam, made an impressive comeback against Bangladesh at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata, India.

The match saw Fakhar Zaman, who had been out of action for five matches due to a knee injury, return to form. He scored a remarkable 81 runs off 74 deliveries, including three fours and seven sixes. One of his sixes even reached a distance of 99 meters. His performance was complemented by Abdullah Shafique’s contribution of 68 runs. Together, they built a 128-run opening partnership that put Pakistan in a commanding position.

However, the victory was not without its hiccups. Skipper Babar Azam was unable to see the game through to the end. He was caught by Mahmudullah at long on while attempting a six and was dismissed for just nine runs. The game was eventually finished by Mohammad Rizwan (26*) and Iftikhar Ahmed (17*), keeping Pakistan’s race to the semi-final alive.

On the other hand, Bangladesh faced early setbacks. Shaheen Afridi’s first-over magic saw Tanzid Hasan dismissed for a duck. Najmul Hossain Shanto (4) and Mushfiqur Rahim (5) were also removed early on by Afridi and Haris Rauf respectively. Despite these challenges, Littos Das and Mahmudullah managed to form a 79-run partnership. However, their efforts were not enough to set a competitive total, and Bangladesh were all out for just 204 runs.

Shaheen Afridi and Wasim Jr were the standout bowlers for Pakistan, each bagging three wickets. Pakistan now faces New Zealand in another must-win match on November 4 in Bengaluru. A win is crucial for Pakistan if they wish to keep their semi-final hopes alive.

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