KARACHI: Pakistan cricket team ended 2021 Thursday with their record T20I run-chase against the West Indies team, rewriting cricket record books in the process.
Skipper Babar Azam scored 79 off 53 while Mohammad Rizwan smashed 87 off 45 as they scored 158 for the first wicket in the third and final match, which was almost cancelled due to COVID-19 cases in the West Indian camp.
Highest number of wins
The Green Shirts have been in sublime form this year. They finished 2021 with six wins out of eight T20I series, winning 20 of the 29 matches they played this year– a T20I record in a calendar year.
6th century opening stand
Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan registered their sixth century stand in Twenty20 Internationals — all this year — the most by any pair in the format.
India’s Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul have five century stands in T20I cricket.
Among these six-century partnerships, three have come while batting second. No other pair has such a record while chasing targets.
Highest T20 score in a calendar year
Right-handed batter Mohammad Rizwan has become the first cricketer to score an overall 2,000 T20 runs in a calendar year, breaking Chris Gayle’s record.
He ended the year with 2,036 runs, smashing 18 half-centuries and a century in T20 cricket this year. Of a total of 2,036 T20 runs, 1,326 were scored in T20Is, also the most by a cricketer in a calendar year.
During the innings, Rizwan smashed three sixes, taking his total T20I 6s tally in 2021 to 42. He set a new record of most sixes in a calendar year, surpassing New Zealand’s Martin Guptill who smashed 41 in the same year.
Rizwan also hit 119 fours in the year to become the only player to smash over 100 boundaries in a calendar year.
20 scores of 50
Babar Azam, the No 3 T20 batter, smashed a half-century and became the first player to achieve 20 scores of 50 or more in overall T20 cricket in a calendar year. Babar’s tally also includes three scores in double figures.
Babar finished the year with 939 runs, right behind Rizwan in the list of most runs this year and also in the list of most runs in a calendar year.
Record run chase
The stellar batting performance by the opening pair helped Pakistan chase a 208-run target comfortably to register the country’s highest successful chases in T20Is. The score is also the highest ever T20I score at the National Stadium Karachi.
Pakistan’s previous highest run-chase was 204 against South Africa at Centurion in April this year.