LAHORE, Pakistan (CMC) – Former West Indies captain Darren Sammy blasted a late cameo but it proved in vain as the World XI went down to Pakistan in the opening Twenty20 International of the Independence Cup in Pakistan on Tuesday.
Chasing an imposing 198 at the Qaddafi Stadium, the World XI lost wickets steadily to decline to 177 for seven off their 20 overs, to lose by 20 runs.
Sammy, batting at number eight, smashed an unbeaten top score of 29 off 16 deliveries while captain Faf du Plessis also scored 29 off 18 balls.
Hashim Amla chipped in with 26 off 17 balls and Tim Paine, a run-a-ball 25.
Sammy, the two-time Twenty20 World Cup-winning skipper, arrived at the crease with the World XI on 145 for six in the 17th over – still requiring 53 for victory off 21 deliveries.
The right-hander’s first seven balls yielded just four runs but he opened up in the penultimate over by belting left-arm seamer Rumman Raees (2-37) for a couple of sixes.
However, the World XI started the final over needing 34 and even though Sammy slammed another six and a four, the target proved out of their reach.
Amla and Tamim Iqbal (18) had posted 43 off 32 balls for the first wicket before du Plessis and Paine put on a further 53 for the third wicket.
Four wickets fell for 44 runs, however, as leg-spinner Shadab Khan picked up two for 25.
Earlier, Babar Azam top-scored with 86 off 52 balls to help Pakistan up to 197 for five.
Azam struck 10 fours and two sixes, adding 122 for the second wicket with Ahmed Shezad (39), while Shoaib Malik chimed in with 38 off 20 deliveries.
The second match of the series is scheduled for today at the same venue.