Johnson hits 52 but Pakistan restrict Canada to 106/7 in T20 World Cup tie

Johnson hits 52 but Pakistan restrict Canada to 106/7 in T20 World Cup tie

New York | Aaron Johnson's 52 was the only bright spot for Canada as an inspired Pakistan restricted them to 106/7 in their Group A contest of the T20 World Cup here on Tuesday.

On a two-paced wicket with the occasional uneven bounce making the rest of their batters struggle, Johnson waged a lone battle for Canada with a 44-ball 52, studded with four sixes and as many fours even as the Pakistan bowlers kept chipping away with wickets.

While Mohammad Amir was the pick among the bowlers with 4-0-13-2, Haris Rauf returned 2/26 while Shaheen Shah Afridi (1/21) and Naseem Shah (1/24) recovered well after wayward starts.

The only Canadian batter to trouble the Pakistan bowlers, Johnson did not shy away from attacking on every available opportunity.

It was his hits down the ground that caught the eye and he managed to clear the ropes with brute power even if he had not timed them well.

But shortly after having completed his half-century, Johnson perished when he missed connecting one against Naseem Sham to be cleaned up.

With the burly Johnson dismissed at the team total of 73, Canada were in danger of being restricted for far less or even bowled out but skipper Saad Bin Zafar (10) and Kaleem Sana (13) took their team past the 100-run mark to give their bowlers a total to bowl at.

The pressure was telling when Pakistan's strike bowler Shaheen began with two full tosses on the pads and Johnson put them away for boundaries.

Johnson cashed in again when Naseem began with a delivery moving away from the batter who sent it flying over the field on the off-side for the third four.

The first success came through when Mohammad Amir, after being hit for a first-ball four as well, cleaned up Navneet Dhaliwal on the final ball.

Shaheen returned with a change of ends to get Pargat Singh (2) caught behind by Fakhar Zaman as Pakistan pulled things back by the end of the powerplay.

Imad then produced a direct hit from cover which caught Nicholas Kirton (1) backing up too far at the non-striker's end, which piled up further pressure on Johnson who did all the heavylifting in the top order.

Haris Rauf produced a double-wicket 10th over to have Shreyas Movva (2) caught behind and Ravinderpal Singh (0) caught in the first slip to leave Canada reeling at 54 for five, while also completing 100 T20I wickets.

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