Pakistan women 107 for 4 (Dar 36*, Maroof 28, Ranasinghe 2-20) beat Sri Lanka women 106 for 8 (Tuba 3-8, Amin 3-21, Anwer 2-32) by six wickets
If the fans – and there was a sizeable contingent – thought Pakistan would make light work of the target, Sri Lanka’s bowlers disabused them of that notion fairly quickly. Keeping things tight, Pakistan were forced to retreat into their shell early on, with Sugandika Kumari removing Gull Feroza in the first over. Muneeba Ali and Iram Javed, who both fell for 18, spent much of the powerplay regrouping and trying to take the sting out of the early attack, and that meant the run scoring was somewhat staid.
But Iram Javed, who had a penchant for skipping down the crease without quite getting to the pitch, paid the price upon trying that once too often, and finding herself stumped. Kavisha Dilhari struck to remove Muneeba as she tried to lap over fine leg, and by the halfway stage, Pakistan were behind Sri Lanka in the game.
It was Dar who took control of the game decisively for Pakistan. With Maroof a reliable anchor at the other end, Dar was proactive in her search for runs, with regular ones and twos mixed in with the occasional boundary. Before you noticed, the asking rate and the runs required were both coming down, and Pakistan were suddenly coasting to a straightforward win. By the time Maroof holed out at mid-on, Pakistan required just 11 further runs. In the 19th over, it took Dar just two balls to get there with panache, smashing the innings’ only six off the first, before an easy single finished the job.