Pakistan captain Babar Azam has been named the ICC Men's Cricketer of the Year, while Ben Stokes landed the Test Cricketer of the Year award.

Babar was outstanding with the bat in 2022, scoring 2,598 runs in 44 matches at an average of 54.12 and raking up eight centuries.

The prolific right-hander was the only player to reach the 2,000 landmark in the calendar year across all formats and led his side to the T20 World Cup final, which they lost against England at the MCG in November.

It was the most successful year of Babar's career, earning him the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy. Babar was also named the Men's ODI Cricketer of the Year.

Stokes also enjoyed a year that he will never forget, making a huge impact after being appointed as England Test captain.

The all-rounder could not have wished for a better start to a new era with him as skipper and Brendon McCullum head coach, turning England's fortunes around with an incredible transformation in a short space of time.

England had won only one of 17 Tests when Joe Root stepped down, but secured series wins over New Zealand and South Africa, beat India in a rearranged Test and celebrated an unprecedented 3-0 whitewash of Pakistan away from home.

Stokes led the side brilliantly as an aggressive brand of cricket paid dividends, while the all-rounder produced another match-winning innings to seal a victory over Pakistan in the T20 World Cup final.

He scored 870 runs at an average of 36.25 last year and took 26 wickets at an average of 31.19.

India run machine Suryakumar Yadav is the Men's T20I Cricketer of the Year, having scored 1,164 runs in 31 matches at an average of 46.56 and a strike-rate of 187.43.

Nat Sciver also starred for England in 2022 and was on Thursday named as the winner of the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy for the ICC Women's Cricketer of the Year.

All-rounder Sciver scored 1,346 runs and claimed 22 wickets from 33 international matches, starring as England were runners-up in the Women's Cricket World Cup 2022,

Sciver made a magnificent unbeaten 148 from only 121 in a defeat against Australia in the final.

Babar Azam felt the decision to give Saud Shakeel out cost Pakistan as they slumped to a Test series defeat to England on day four at Multan Cricket Stadium.

The tourists won another dramatic match by 26 runs on Monday to take an unassailable 2-0 lead.

Shakeel (94) and Mohammad Nawaz (45) appeared to have given Pakistan the upper hand with a sixth-wicket stand of 80, but both were removed in quick succession by Mark Wood.

Aleem Dar put his finger up after Shakeel edged a delivery from Wood down the leg side and third umpire Joel Wilson stayed with the on-field decision, seeing no evidence that Ollie Pope did not take the ball cleanly.

Pakistan captain Babar believes Shakeel should have remained in the middle.

He said: "The Shakeel dismissal cost us. It looked to us as if the ball had touched the ground. As a professional, you have to respect the umpire's decision, but we felt the ball had been grounded."

England skipper Ben Stokes had a different opinion on the incident.

He said: "I don't think [there were any doubts about the catch], personally. The only thing where you start worrying is when it gets looked at for a long period of time because that's when you start having doubt in your own head.

"I've been part of games before where I've been on the team who's been on the receiving end of those decisions and you're always like, 'that's not carried'.

"You see a lot of those decisions and those type of catches in cricket. You could say the similar thing was when Rooty [Joe Root] got caught at short leg - you could say that might have touched the floor.

"But you've just got to go with what the umpire's decision is. It went our way but I've been involved in a few decisions where stuff like that has gone against us. But you can't change that."

Ben Stokes reiterated his England side have little interest in drawing games after a dramatic denouement saw them claim a 74-run victory over Pakistan in the pair's first Test.

In the tourists' first red-ball visit to the country since 2005, an aggressive performance with bat and ball paid off as Jack Leach beat the dying light on the final day to dismiss Naseem Shah.

Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum's tactical approach on a flat surface yielded a Test match with the third-highest aggregate number of runs in history, and an early declaration that set up a thrilling final day.

James Anderson and Ollie Robinson struck in a rip-roaring passage after tea to check the ultimate momentum of any Pakistan chase, and Stokes acknowledged vindication for his game-plan in the aftermath.

"We've no interest in drawing," he stated. "On pitches like this, you have to make things happen, [you have to] make some bold decisions. We had to entice the batters to play a shot at times.

"I think it's maybe up there with England's greatest away wins. The toil everyone has put in is hitting. We've done something very special this week.

England had not won in red-ball cricket in Pakistan since a famed win in Karachi in 2000, and there were similarities to its sundown finale as England raced to snag their final wickets before the light was gone in Rawalpindi.

It is a feat made all the more impressive by how the tourists pulled together after a virus outbreak in the build-up left questions over whether the Test would actually proceed as intended.

"There's a few things you can plan for, which is the way we want to approach Test cricket," Stokes added. "But what you can't plan for is what happened to the squad a few days before. That seems a long time ago.

"I want to give our group of players a lot of credit for coming here and turning up, a little bit under the weather. Will Jacks got the nod to make his debut about three minutes before team-time,

"You can go through this whole Test match and pick out key individuals. I think with what we've had to deal with coming into this Test match makes this win feel a little bit better."

Opposite number Babar Azam was left to rue missed opportunities for his side, Pakistan having entered the final session needing only 86 to win with five wickets in hand after tea.

"We were not up to the mark," he added, "We had a golden chance to win this Test, but session by session we lost wickets. All credit to our bowlers, it was difficult.

"We had our opportunity but we couldn't get partnerships in the end. We have a lot of positives, so we will try to continue that in the next match."

England need eight wickets to win the first Test on the final day and Pakistan require 263 runs to go 1-0 up after a bold declaration from Ben Stokes at Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium.

Stokes set Pakistan 343 for victory on a flat pitch when he ended the tourists' innings on 264-7 from 35.5 overs during the tea break on Sunday and they closed on 80-2.

Debutant Will Jacks had earlier taken 6-161 to bowl Pakistan out for 579 before England put their foot down again, with Harry Brook (87), Joe Root (73) and Zak Crawley (50) scoring rapid half-centuries.

Having kept the match alive with such a positive approach on a placid track, England got rid of Abdullah Shafique and Babar Azam, with Azhar Ali also departing retired hurt to leave the game well poised heading into the final day.

Agha Salman (53) and Zahid Mahmood (17) held England up with an eighth-wicket stand of 57 after they resumed on 499-7, but the impressive Jacks removed that pair and Haris Rauf to end the innings.

Ben Duckett was taken by Salman at second slip off Naseem Shah for a golden duck in the first over of England's second innings and Ollie Pope made only 15, but Crawley and Root piled on the runs.

They put on 60 before the elegant Crawley, one of the tourists' four first-innings centurions, was removed by Mohammad Ali, with Brook then sharing a rapid stand of 96 with Root.

Former captain Root batted left-handed at one stage as he made a classy half-century, while Brook showed his full repertoire of shots on both sides of the wicket as the runs continued to flow.

Root was caught when sweeping Zahid and Stokes fell without scoring in the same over, before declaring after the brilliant Brook was cleaned up by Naseem on the stroke of tea.

England's short-ball approach paid off when Ollie Robinson dismissed Shafique and Stokes claimed the huge wicket of Babar, caught behind for only four, after Azhar departed having taken blow on his index finger.

Imam-ul-Haq (43 not out) and Saud Shakeel (24no) saw Pakistan through to the close, the debutant getting a late life when he was dropped by Keaton Jennings at short leg. 

The joy of six for Jacks 

Jacks came into the England set-up better known for his explosive batting than his bowling, but the spinning all-rounder has made a big impact with the ball on his Test bow.

He polished off Pakistan's first innings in the morning session to double his wicket tally, earning his rewards for bowling 40.3 overs. 

Jacks later struck three sixes as he made a quickfire 23 from 13 balls as England batted in one-day mode once again before the declaration.

Blistering Brook, Stokes strikes

Following a 153 from 116 balls in the first innings, Brook put on another show as he took the Pakistan bowling attack apart.

He struck three sixes and 11 fours, demonstrating great timing and clean hitting to enable Stokes to declare during the tea interval.

Stokes then claimed the huge scalp of Babar to give England the upper hand after Robinson had Shafique taken by Brook in the deep.

Babar Azam scored the seventh century of the match but England's persistence paid off as they took four wickets in the final session on day three of the first Test against Pakistan.

Imam-ul-Haq (121) and Abdullah Shafique (114) completed their hundreds in the morning session at Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium before their opening stand came to an end with 225 on the board.

Captain Babar (136) got in on the act with a typically stylish innings, but Pakistan closed on 487-7 in reply to the tourists' 657 all out – trailing by 160 runs.

Debutant Will Jacks took 3-123 and Jack Leach claimed 2-158 on a flat wicket, England earning late rewards for toiling in the heat after Pakistan avoided the follow-on.

Spinning all-rounder Jacks got the breakthrough after Pakistan resumed on 181 without loss, Shafique edging a wide delivery through to wicketkeeper Ollie Pope.

Imam holed out trying to launch Leach over the rope and Pakistan were 283-3 at lunch after the left-arm tweaker trapped Azhar Ali (27) leg before.

Babar and Saud Shakeel prevented any further damage from being done in a wicketless afternoon session, the skipper serenely scoring another century he brought up by dispatching Ben Stokes through the covers for four.

Ollie Robinson struck in the first over after tea, though, debutant Shakeel nicking the seamer behind for 37, and Babar ended a fifth-wicket stand of 60 with Mohammad Rizwan by slapping Jacks to Leach at point.

Rizwan (29) became James Anderson's first victim and Naseem Shah struck a well-flighted Jacks delivery to Leach in the deep as England ended the day strongly.

Openers make history in run-fest

All four opening batters made centuries in the same match for only the second time in a Test – and this was the first time that each of the four reached three figures in the first innings.

It was also the first occasion in which there have been two double-century opening stands in a Test.

Imam made his third hundred in as many Test knocks in Rawalpindi, having scored one in both innings against Australia in March. Shafique has three Test centuries in only 14 innings.

Babar delivers another masterclass

Skipper Babar made his eighth Test hundred and a first against England with yet another masterclass.

The elegant right-hander showed a combination of sweet timing and aggression in a stylish knock that we have become so accustomed to seeing.

Babar has scored three Test hundreds and four half-centuries this year in 10 Test innings, hitting one six and 19 fours in his latest exhibition of batting of the highest order.

Babar Azam has put his success as Pakistan captain down to his attempts to replicate South Africa great AB de Villiers.

Azam will lead Pakistan in a three-match Test series against England, starting this week in Rawalpindi. It is the tourists' first red-ball match in the country since 2005.

The form of the skipper will be key to Pakistan's hopes of marking the occasion with a victory following another impressive year with the bat.

Azam is averaging 73.44 in Tests in 2022 after two centuries and four fifties in nine innings, and ahead of facing England, he revealed his inspiration in an interview with Sky Sports.

"To be honest, my role model is AB de Villiers because I love him and the way he is playing and the way he is playing all the shots," Azam said.

"When I see him on the TV, the next day I am trying every shot in the nets. I try to copy De Villiers and try to look and play like De Villiers because my ideal is everything he is."

De Villiers, who retired from all forms of international cricket in 2018, had a Test batting average of 50.66 and scored 22 hundreds in the longest format.

Meanwhile, Babar is relishing the chance to take on England on home soil, adding: "We are looking forward to a historic series, and first of all, welcome to the England team.

"I know a few of the boys already in T20 format and a few new faces, so I think they will enjoy it a lot. We are looking forward to the series and everyone is ready."

Babar Azam was left frustrated after key bowler Shaheen Afridi was forced off with injury in Pakistan's T20 World Cup final defeat to England on Sunday.

Babar's men set England just 138 to win, but Afridi struck early to dismiss England opener Alex Hales before making a superb catch to remove Harry Brook off Shadab Khan's bowling, stirring Pakistan's hopes of victory.

However, Afridi injured himself in his role in Brook's wicket and was forced off the field, and though he did return, the 22-year-old managed just one delivery before having to make way again.

It was a bitter blow for Pakistan, who seemingly lost all momentum as Ben Stokes' half-century and some crucial boundaries from Moeen Ali condemned them to a heartbreaking defeat.

Babar pointed to Afridi's injury as the key moment, saying in the post-match presentation: "We were 20 runs short, but the fight to the last over was unbelievable.

"Our bowling is one of the best but unfortunately Shaheen's injury cost us a different result, but that's part of the game.

"The way the team has gone in the last four matches [was] incredible. I told the boys to play their natural game, with freedom. Congratulations to England."

The final defeat ended a disappointing individual tournament for Babar, who finished with a total run tally of 124 off 133 balls, while facing 62 dot balls as he passed 50 just once across his seven innings.

But the Pakistan captain was pleased with his team's campaign, despite his own struggles, adding in his press conference: "We weren't expecting to lose the first two.

"But how we've come back, grabbed chances, I'm proud of the team as a captain."

Pakistan's opening batters returned to form at the ideal moment as they propelled their side into the T20 World Cup final at New Zealand's expense.

Set a competitive target of 153 at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Wednesday, Pakistan claimed a seven-wicket triumph to tee up a meeting with England or sub-continental rivals India.

Their victory owed much to the work of Mohammad Rizwan and Babar Azam, who scored 57 and 53 respectively, with both openers finding form just when Pakistan needed them most.

Kane Williamson's 46 and an unbeaten 53 from Daryl Mitchell ensured New Zealand – runners-up to Australia in the United Arab Emirates last year – were in with a chance, as they reached 152-4 in their 20 overs, with Shaheen Shah Afridi (2-24) the pick of Pakistan's bowlers.

Matters might have been much different had Devon Conway taken the chance to send Babar packing with the first ball Pakistan's captain faced, only to drop the catch.

Babar took full advantage, and it was the 13th over – with Pakistan having reached 105 – before he fell to Trent Boult (2-33), though Rizwan chipped his way to a half-century.

Boult claimed another vital wicket when Rizwan picked out Glenn Phillips in the deep, though the damage was already done - the stage set for Mohammad Haris (30) to lash Lockie Ferguson for two boundaries, the second of which was a huge six that put Pakistan well ahead of the required run rate.

Haris clipped to Finn Allen at the end of the penultimate over, yet Shan Masood had no nerves in the first ball of the final over as he sent Pakistan into their first World Cup final since 2007, when they were beaten by India.

Captain's knock from Babar

Pakistan looked to be staring down the barrel of an early exit from the tournament last weekend, but South Africa's shock defeat to the Netherlands handed them a chance. Now, they will go for glory in the tournament's showpiece match.

While Rizwan had started to find his form again in the later Group 2 matches, Babar had accumulated only 39 runs across the tournament prior to Wednesday, but he delivered when it mattered this time out, hitting seven fours in his 42-ball knock.

Fielding lets New Zealand down

What might have been for the Black Caps, who will have to lick their wounds again after also coming so close in 2021.

They put down three great opportunities throughout Pakistan's innings, including Ish Sodhi's late drop of Haris. New Zealand have now lost three of their T20 World Cup semi-finals, while they have lost five of their last six meetings with Pakistan in the format.

Kane Williamson lavished praise on New Zealand's "outstanding" bowling attack as they prepare to face Pakistan in the first T20 World Cup semi-final on Wednesday.

The Blacks Caps qualified for the last four as Group 1 winners, winning three matches and only suffering one defeat against England.

Beaten by Australia in the final in Dubai last year, the consistent Black Caps once again find themselves challenging for another trophy.

New Zealand have never won the T20 World Cup but have a great chance to put the heartbreak of the 2021 final behind them in Australia.

Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Mitchell Santner, Lockie Ferguson and Ish Sodhi have all shown their quality with the ball for the Black Caps.

Captain Williamson knows he is lucky to have such a strong attack.

He said: "They're experienced players for us. They've played for us a long time, whether that's taking wickets or, in particular, adjusting to conditions which certainly we need them to come to tournaments, world events, that's a big part of playing.

"So they've been outstanding throughout this tournament. And tomorrow we're at another venue against another opposition, and we'll have to make those adjustments again."

Pakistan sneaked into the semi-finals thanks to the Netherlands' shock defeat of South Africa after Babar Azam's side beat Bangladesh.

Williamson knows how dangerous Pakistan can be as they prepare for a showdown at the Sydney Cricket Ground, with the winners facing England or India.

"They've got an outstanding pace attack. They've been playing really good cricket. They've got very experienced players on their side, who are match-winners. So, that's a real strength for them," the batter said.

Pakistan beat New Zealand in a tri-series final last month and have won four of the past five matches between the two sides in the shortest format.

 

Afridi firing on all cylinders 

Shaheen Shah Afridi has demonstrated why Pakistan were so eager for him to return to full fitness for this tournament after a spell out with a knee injury.

The left-arm paceman looked understandably rusty at the start of the Super 12 stage, but played a huge part in seeing Pakistan through by claiming 3-14 in a win over South Africa and 4-22 in the victory over the Tigers.

Afridi takes some stopping when he is at his hostile best and New Zealand's openers will need to try and see him off when he charges in with the new ball.

Babar due to show his brilliance

Pakistan have been able to count on captain Babar time and again with the bat, but he had not reached double figures before making 25 against Bangladesh.

The prolific skipper never tends to go long without a significant score and it would be no surprise if he delivers on the big stage in Sydney.

Run machine Babar averages an impressive 41.39 in T20Is, with a strike rate of 127.98.

David Miller expects South Africa to target Pakistan's struggling top order in Thursday's T20 World Cup clash.

The sides face off at the Sydney Cricket Ground in what is a must-win game for Pakistan, who need a victory to keep their hopes of reaching the semi-finals alive.

Meanwhile, unbeaten South Africa head into the match on the back of a five-wicket victory over India.

Victory for the Proteas would see them return to the top of Group 2 and end Pakistan's hopes of qualifying in the process.

Pakistan's struggles have, in large part, been down to their misfiring top-order batters. Captain Babar Azam has accumulated just eight runs across his three innings in the tournament, while Mohammad Rizwan scored four and 14 against India and Zimbabwe respectively, before returning to form with 49 against the Netherlands last time out.

Miller knows Babar and Rizwan – who has scored 2,214 T20I runs since the start of 2021, the most of any batter – are still world class, but believes South Africa's in-form bowling attack are a match for any team.

He told reporters: "This game is all about confidence, and yeah, they haven't probably performed the way they've wanted to, but they're world-class players, and we're expecting them to come out and bring their A-game and be up for the challenge.

"It's by all means not just going in there and expecting to get them out first ball or early up. We've got to work really hard for every wicket, and hopefully we can get them early and the Pakistan middle order under pressure a little bit earlier than later."

South Africa pacemen Wayne Parnell (3-15) and Lungi Ngidi (4-29) limited India to 113-9 on Sunday, though the Proteas still relied on a solid partnership between Miller (59 not out) and Aiden Markram (52) to get over the line in Perth.

Miller is the most capped T20I player in South Africa's squad, and knows his experience is of huge benefit in the biggest moments.

"Experience is a really valuable thing," he said. "In the previous game, we were in a little bit of trouble, there was a lot of pressure to win the game and it's just about slowing the process down and understanding what is required right now. 

"In the past we maybe could have got a little hasty. It's just trying to weather the storm."

Pakistan have lost 11 T20Is in 2022, and one more defeat would see them equal their worst-ever tally in the format in a single year (12 in 2010).

South Africa on the other hand are aiming to bring up a 10th T20I win of the year, though they have lost their last two meetings with Pakistan in the format.

Mohammad Rizwan crafted a fluent 49 as Pakistan eased to their first victory and kept their hopes alive at the T20 World Cup after a six-wicket triumph over the Netherlands.

Babar Azam's side suffered final-over heartbreak against both India and Zimbabwe in Australia, though had little trouble at Optus Stadium after restricting the Netherlands to just 91-9 on Sunday.

Shadab Khan tore through the Dutch batting line-up, with the leg-spinner taking 3-22. Colin Ackermann's 27 from as many balls represented the only Netherlands batter to pass 20 runs.

Despite Babar being run out by Roelof van der Merwe for just four, Rizwan and Fakhar Zaman steadied the ship before the latter fell to Brandon Glover for 20, leaving Pakistan 53-2 from 7.1 overs.

Rizwan survived a review on 39, a decision overturned after Logan van Beek failed to get his hands under a chance from Fred Klaassen's bowling, though the wicket-keeper batter was dismissed soon after.

Paul van Meekeren (1-19) had Rizwan caught behind in the 13th over and Shan Masood (12) followed to Glover (2-22), though Iftikhar Ahmed (six not out) and Shadab (four not out) saw Pakistan over the line with 37 balls to spare.

Spin torments Netherlands

Shadab and Mohammad Wasim (2-15) did the damage as the Netherlands failed to deal with Pakistan's spin bowling.

Mohammad Nawaz went wicketless from his two overs but also conceded just 11 runs as Pakistan limited the Netherlands to a score that ensured no final-over chaos was in store for Babar's side.

Pakistan reliant on other results

Pakistan will have been delighted to see Fakhar, returning from a seven-week absence after a knee injury, bat fluently in the middle order as they picked up victory in a must-win game.

Yet even if Babar's side defeat South Africa and Bangladesh in their remaining Group 2 games, they will need other results to go their way to make the top two, starting with India beating the Proteas later on Sunday.

Hosts Australia head into the T20 World Cup as defending champions, but no team has ever won back-to-back editions of this tournament.

The showpiece for international cricket's shortest format has provided some spectacular moments since South Africa staged the first edition 15 years ago.

West Indies are the only team to have carried off the trophy twice, and their long-time ring master Chris Gayle is absent this time, having not featured since the Caribbean side bowed out of the T20 World Cup last year.

With Gayle all but retired from internationals, and with others shuffling away, new stars will emerge over the coming weeks, and some established figures will be chasing records.

Here, Stats Perform looks at the T20 World Cup's top performers, and the spectacular feats from tournaments gone by that the class of 2022 will have in their sights.

Batters bid to go big in post-Gayle era

Sri Lanka great Mahela Jayawardene is the only batter to have topped 1,000 runs in the history of the T20 World Cup, reaching 1,016 from 31 innings, spanning 2007 to 2014. He went out on a sensational high, passing the 1,000-run barrier in the final as Sri Lanka won the 2014 title by beating India in Mirpur.

Windies great Gayle sits second on that list with 965 runs, and is the only batter to have made two centuries in T20 World Cups. Those were also the fastest two tons in T20 World Cup history (47 balls v England in 2016, 50 balls v South Africa in 2007).

There are a number of batters who could join Jayawardene in reaching 1,000 runs at the T20 World Cup, but principal among them are the India pair of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli.

Rohit replaced Kohli as skipper at the end of last year, following India's failure to get past the Super 12 stage at the World Cup, and there could be a friendly rivalry emerging in the race for four figures.

Rohit enters the tournament for top-ranked India on 847 runs in past editions, while Kohli has 845. Strikingly, Rohit's runs have come from 30 innings at an average of 38.50, whereas Kohli has plundered his in just 19 innings, and the latter's average of 76.81 is by far and away the best among all batters with 500-plus runs in the competition.

It helps, of course, that Kohli has finished unbeaten in eight of those knocks. The next highest average among such players is former England batter Kevin Pietersen's 44.61 (580 runs from 15 innings, two unbeaten).

The highest score by any batter in a single innings at the T20 World Cup remains the 123 that Brendon McCullum, now England's Test head coach, plundered for New Zealand against Bangladesh in Pallekele at the 2012 tournament. That was McCullum's highest score across his entire T20I career.

David Warner is another who could make it to 1,000 runs, but the Australia opener will need a big tournament to make that happen. He goes in on 762 runs from 30 prior innings, Cricinfo statistics show.

Only one batter has reached 500 T20 World Cup runs without making a fifty, and that was former India captain MS Dhoni, who skippered the team to the 2007 title. His best score in 29 innings, from which he accumulated 529 runs, was a modest 45.

Pakistan's Babar Azam dazzled at the 2021 T20 World Cup, scoring a tournament-high 303 runs in six innings.

His four half-centuries matched the most by any player in an edition of the tournament, the ICC said, having been previously achieved in 2014 by Kohli and in 2007 by Matthew Hayden.

Shakib, Mendis and Campher set standards for bowling elite

Bangladesh's Shakib Al Hasan is something of a T20 World Cup superstar. As well as ranking eighth on the run-scoring list (698 from 31 innings), the all-rounder has taken more wickets than anyone, with 41 at an average of 17.29.

A haul of 11 at the 2021 tournament took him top of the list, and there is nobody threatening to get particularly close to the 35-year-old spinner.

Among players selected for this tournament, the player with the next highest wicket haul is India's Ravichandran Ashwin, with 26 from 18 matches.

When it comes to T20 cricket, unsurprisingly there have been precious few five-wicket hauls, given the bowlers each have just a four-over allocation.

Sri Lanka's Ajantha Mendis is the only bowler to have snagged six in an innings, taking princely figures of 6-8 against Zimbabwe in 2012, while eight others have taken five wickets in a match, headed by Rangana Herath's remarkable 5-3 against New Zealand at the 2014 tournament, when the Black Caps were skittled for 60.

That ranks as the fourth-lowest team score in a T20 World Cup, with Netherlands responsible for the two worst totals, both times folding against Sri Lanka when making 39 at Chattogram in 2014 and 44 in Sharjah last year.

The other side to post a sub-60 score were West Indies, routed for 55 by England in Dubai 12 months ago.

A hat-trick represents the holy grail for all bowlers, and there have been just four in T20 World Cups, with Brett Lee taking the first for Australia against Bangladesh at the inaugural 2007 tournament.

There were no more until the 2021 tournament, which incredibly featured three: Curtis Campher took four wickets in four balls for Ireland against Netherlands, before Wanindu Hasaranga (for Sri Lanka against South Africa) and Kagiso Rabada (for South Africa against England) both managed three in three.

Phil Salt hit a blistering 88 as England beat Pakistan by eight wickets on Friday to level up their seven-match T20I series at 3-3 in Lahore.

Pakistan recovered from a slow start that saw them 15-2 at one point to post 169-6 at the Gaddafi Stadium, thanks in large to the brilliant Babar Azam (87 not out).

But England made easy work of the chase as they reached 100 from seven overs to set up a decider on Sunday.

Without in-form Mohammad Rizwan, Pakistan initially struggled as Mohammad Haris (7) and Shan Masood (0) fell early on, leaving Babar to do much of the leg work.

Haider Ali (18), Iftikhar Ahmed (31) and Asif Ali took their side to 136-4, but the latter upper cut to Reece Topley for nine runs and Mohammad Nawaz (12) followed soon after.

Babar's 87 did at least give England something to think about, but Salt and Alex Hales put on an opening partnership of 55 off 23 balls, before the latter was removed for 27.

Salt reached his half-century off just 19 balls en route to an unbeaten 88, including the decisive shot as England posted 170-2 to level things up.

Babar brilliance not enough

Pakistan were without run machine Rizwan but Babar stepped up with 87 runs off 59 balls, which included three sixes and seven fours.

Babar surpassed a milestone 3,000 T20I runs in the process, yet it was not enough to steer the hosts to an unassailable series lead.

England ease to victory

The tourists were set 170 to avoid a third successive T20I defeat to Pakistan for the first time ever and had no trouble in reaching that target.

Only once before – against New Zealand in November 2019 (6.4 overs in a game reduced by rain to 11 overs) – have England previously reached 100 from seven overs.

Salt played a key part in that as he underlined his credentials to partner Jos Buttler at the upcoming T20 World Cup.

Babar Azam became the first Pakistan player to score two Twenty20 International centuries as they levelled the series with a record-breaking 10-wicket win over England.

The tourists looked to have given themselves a great chance of going 2-0 up by posting 199-5 at the National Stadium in Karachi on Thursday, but Babar and Rizwan stole the show with a stunning world record stand in a T20I run chase of 203.

Shahnawaz Dahani (2-37) struck twice in as many balls to get rid of Alex Hales (26) and Dawid Malan (0) before Phil Salt fell for 30, with Moeen Ali having won the toss and elected to bat first.

Ben Duckett hit a quickfire 43 and Harry Brook a brisk 31, with stand-in captain Moeen then blasting an unbeaten 55 from only 23 deliveries to set Pakistan 200 to win, Haris Rauf taking 2-30 from his four overs.

Skipper Babar and Rizwan showed their class as they brought up a century stand in just 69 balls, Hales left to rue dropping the wicketkeeper-batter on 23 as he made a third consecutive half-century.

The prolific Babar brought up his hundred in the 18th over and finished unbeaten on 110 from 66 balls in a masterclass, with the in-form Rizwan 88 not out off 51 deliveries as England were left not knowing what had him them.

Babar cleared the rope six five times and hit 11 fours, while Rizwan launched four sixes and five fours as they showed a combination of timing and power.

Babar reaches another milestone in style

The incredible Babar surged past the 8,000-run mark in T20s in his latest masterful knock. He reached that milestone in his 218 innings, with only Chris Gayle (213) needing fewer to rack up 8,000.

He also now holds the record for the most centuries as Pakistan captain with 10 ahead of the great Inzamam-ul-Haq.

Moeen fireworks in vain, Duckett catches the eye

While England were unable to make an impact in the field due to the brilliant of Pakistan's openers, they impressed with the bat.

Moeen hit four sixes and as many fours, while Duckett looked in great touch before he departed when well set, hitting seven boundaries.

India chased 147 to beat Pakistan in the Asia Cup by five wickets, aided by strong innings from Hardik Pandya and the returning Virat Kohli.

After India won the toss and opted to bowl first, Pakistan captain and dangerman Babar Azam was dismissed by Bhuvneshwar Kumar within three overs, before fellow opener Mohammad Rizwan top-scored with 43 as Pakistan were bowled out for 147 with one ball of the innings remaining.

Bhuvneshwar was the pick of the Indian bowlers, taking 4-26, while Pandya and Arshdeep Singh took three and two wickets respectively. 

India's chase got off to a woeful start as KL Rahul, making his return from injury, was removed for a golden duck, dragging on from the bowling of Pakistan T20I debutant Naseem Shah. Rahul's dismissal brought in Kohli, returning after a short hiatus from cricket, who made an important 35 before being caught at long-off. 

A 36-run partnership between Ravindra Jadeja and Suryakumar Yadav looked to have set India on their way to victory but Shah struck again, dismissing Suryakumar to tee up a tense finish.

But Pandya smashed a brilliant 33 runs off 17 deliveries to win the game for his team, even after Jadeja was bowled in the final over. With India needing six off three balls, Pandya sent a maximum flying into the stands to dramatically seal the victory.

Powerful pace attack

After spinners took all 10 wickets for India in their last T20I, a victory over West Indies, all 10 wickets in this Asia Cup opener were taken by Indian pace bowlers for the first time in a T20I innings as they bowled out Pakistan for 147, a score which they were able to chase down.

Returning Kholi

In Kohli's return to cricket, he became just the second player after Ross Taylor to feature in 100 or more internationals across the three formats. After being dropped by Fakhar Zaman on nought, Kohli looked in decent nick as he scored 35 valuable runs before getting out. 

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