Prolific Perera helps World XI set up Pakistan decider

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A brilliant unbeaten half-century by South Africa's Hashim Amla helped the World XI win the thriller that was the second T20 by seven wickets and level the series at Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore on Wednesday and let the last T20 global be the series decider.

That helped World XI get to 175 for 3 in 19.5 overs in response to Pakistan's 174 for 6. Chasing a target of 175, World XI reached the target in the final of the match with a ball to spare.

Yesterday, Pakistan beat the World XI by 20 runs in an exciting finish, celebrating the return of global cricket to the country. The left-handed opener had hit two fours and a majestic six during his 19-ball 23. The partnership broke when Iqbal hit a Sohail Khan delivery towards Shoaib Malik and was caught out for 23. "We should have defended this total", he said.

Left-hander Perera went on a rampage as the visitors needed 33 off the last two overs, smashing two sixes off the 19th over bowled by Sohail Khan before sealing the match in the last over. "I am particularly disappointed by the deteriorating disciplines in the last five overs and with batsmen hitting out our fielding came under pressure as we saw a regulation catch was dropped". While Shehzad scored 43 (34 balls) Azam hit 45 (38).

With the victory World XI leveled the three-match series at 1-1.

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Why? Because of the facts, which our national leaders refuse to acknowledge, apparently preferring their alt-facts and lies instead.

It was left to Ahmed Shehzad and Babar Azam to fix the innings, like they did with their 122-run stand on Tuesday.

In Pakistan, match can be seen live on PTV Sports, Ten Sports and Pakistan Television Broadcasters.

But Du Plessis' exit heralded the arrival of Perera, who struck five sixes including the match-winning hit off Rumman Raees, clubbing a full toss straight over the seamer's head to ensure Friday's finale will not be a dead rubber. His innings had taken him to 1692 runs in Twenty20 Internationals to become Pakistan's highest run-getter in the format, going past Umar Akmal's 1690 runs.

West Indian Samuel Badree and Perera took two wickets each, giving away 31 and 23 runs respectively, while South African Imran Tahir and Australian Ben Cutting took one each for 29 and 52 runs respectively.