Edinburgh - Pakistan halted Scotland’s giant-killing heroics with a 48-run victory over the minnows in a Twenty20 clash in Edinburgh on Tuesday.

After the famously stirring victory against England, Scotland were brought back down to earth by a ruthlessly professional performance from Pakistan, who took a 1-0 lead in the T20I series.

Having taken out the world’s top one-day international side with a historic win over England on Sunday, the Scots were looking to complete a stunning double by toppling a Pakistan team rated as the top Twenty20 nation. But Grant Bradburn’s side were unable to emulate their epic success thanks to solid Pakistan display.

After winning what looked like a crucial toss, Sarfraz Ahmed made the right decision this time, batting first on a pancake of a track. He was instrumental to the victory, top-scoring with an unbeaten 89 using all the craft and street-smartness that makes him such a compelling player to watch. Aided by the evergreen Shoaib Malik, who smashed five sixes in a 27-ball 53, Pakistan amassed their second-highest T20I score, reaching 204.

The last five overs was absolute carnage. Eighty runs came off them with Scotland bowling in shoddy fashion. The decision to use debutant left-arm spinner Hamza Tahir when the Sarfraz-Shoaib partnership was at its most devastating phase was somewhat bizarre. Final figures of 4-0-57-0 suggest it didn’t quite work either.

The game didn’t pass without shades of the Scottish side that so thrillingly upstaged the old enemy England a couple of days ago. After an ominously explosive start by Pakistan - chiefly Fakhar Zaman, who was given a reprieve after Michael Leask put down an easy chance, Scotland had the better of the middle overs. Leask, Mark Watt and Alisdair Evans - the pick of the bowlers - strangled Pakistan after the Powerplay. Hussain Talat never looked comfortable at the crease and Sarfraz was struggling for rhythm early, all of which contributed to the run-rate hovering around 8, well below par for a batting paradise.

Scotland had made a bright start, with Ali Evans dismissing Ahmed Shehzad (14) and Fakhar Zaman (21) before Richie Berrington removed Hussain Talat (18). But they could have done with debutant spinner Hamza Tahir was given a bruising introduction as he was smashed for 57 costly runs off his four overs. Having set a steady rate in the early stages, Pakistan put their foot on the gas in the final five overs.

That left the Scots requiring a repeat of the big-hitting which saw them run up a tally of 371 for five against England. But the hosts’ run chase went flat as Scotland finished on 156 for six in response to Pakistan’s 204 for four at the Grange.

The start of the Scottish innings suggested they were well up for the chase. Coetzer was impressive, surgically picking out gaps in a Powerplay field before lofting Mohammad Amir for a six straight over his head. A remarkable reverse-swept six off Mohammad Nawaz from George Munsey in the first over was perhaps the shot of the match, and the causal impudence with which it was attempted signified the journey Scotland have been through to feel comfortable enough at this level. By the end of the fifth over, Scotland had reached fifty without loss, keeping on top of the run-rate and ahead of Pakistan at that stage.

But the introduction of Hasan Ali to the Pakistan attack provided the injection of pace they were looking for and when he removed Munsey for 25, the Scots looked in trouble. With Calum MacLeod, Sunday’s star of the show with his 140 not out knock, trapped lbw by Shadab Khan for just 12, the fight quickly drifted out of the hosts’ showing. Scotland will have a second chance to shock Pakistan when the teams meet again on Wednesday.

None of the Scotland batsmen capitalised on the start failing to take the attack back to the bowlers who were disciplined to restrict the hosts.



Fakhar Zaman c Cross b Evans 21

Ahmed Shehzad c Berrington b Evans 14

Hussain Talat c Hamza b Berrington 18

Sarfraz Ahmed not out 89

Shoaib Malik c Leask b Evans 53

Asif Ali not out 1

EXTRAS: (lb4, w4) 8

TOTAL: (4 wkts; 20 overs) 204

FOW: 1-33, 2-46, 3-87, 4-183

BOWLING: S Sharif 4-0-43-0, M Watt 4-0-42-0, Hamza Tahir 4-0-57-0, A Evans 4-0-23-3, M Leask 1-0-6-0, R Berrington 3-0-29-1


H Munsey c Sarfraz b Hasan 25

K Coetzer c Asif b Nawaz 31

R Berrington b Shadab 3

C MacLeod lbw b Shadab 12

D Budge c Faheem b Amir 24

M Leask not out 38

M Cross c Shoaib b Hasan 13

S Sharif not out 3

EXTRAS: (lb4, nb1, w2) 7

TOTAL: (6 wkts; 20 overs) 156/

FOW: 1-53, 2-63, 3-69, 4-82, 5-107, 6-150

BOWLING: M Nawaz 4-0-22-1, M Amir 4-0-45-1, Hasan Ali 4-0-33-2, Faheem Ashraf 3-0-23-0, Shadab Khan 4-0-25-2, Hussain Talat 1-0-4-0

TOSS: Pakistan

MAN OF THE MATCH: Sarfraz Ahmed

UMPIRES: Alex Dowdalls, Allan Haggo

TV UMPIRE: Ian Ramage