Rawalpindi: Skipper Babar Azam smashed 82 runs off 55 balls to help Pakistan beat Zimbabwe by six wickets in the first T20I at Pindi Stadium.
The home side in their favorite format were dominant throughout their chase of 157 runs in 20 overs. The opening pair of Babar and Fakhar Zaman was steady with their 36 runs together on the scoreboard before Fakhar fell to Blessing Muzarabani after scoring 19 off 12 with the help of two boundaries and a six.
Babar then partnered with veteran Mohammad Hafeez after young Haider Ali departed for just seven runs and scored 80 runs together. Hafeez struck three boundaries and a six to score 36 off 32 balls. Babar smashed nine boundaries and a six.
Khushdil Shah contributed 5 runs including a four in his inning spread over just 4 balls.
Blessing Muzarabani bagged two wickets for Zimbabwe while Tendai Chatara and Richard Ngawara took a wicket each.
Earlier, Wesley Madhevere remained unbeaten on 70 runs as Zimbabwe put-up a decent 156-6 total on the board. The right-handed batsman struck nine fours and a six to score his maiden half-century (70) in the shorter format.
Rescuing the tourists at 34-2, Madhevere partnered with Sean Williams to score 36 runs together to put Zimbabwe to the forefront for a while.
In the end, Elton Chigumbura played a cameo of 21 runs off 13 balls laced with two boundaries and a maximum.
Birthday boy Harish Rauf and Wahab Riaz bagged two wickets while Mohammad Hasnain and Usman Qadir shared a wicket apiece.
Babar bagged man-of-the-match award for his match-winning knock. Both the teams will face each other in the second T20I tomorrow.