Harare: Opener Mohammad Hafeez hit a half-century before taking four wickets with his off-spin to guide Pakistan to a comprehensive 85-run win over Zimbabwe on Friday.
Hafeez (71) and fellow opener Asad Shafiq (38) put on 74 runs for the first wicket, taking advantage of some wayward bowling and poor fielding by Zimbabwe to set Pakistan on the path to 198-4.
He then bowled with good accuracy to remove Hamilton Masakadza (12), Chamu Chibhabha (28), Elton Chigumbura (1), and Ray Price (3) as Zimbabwe were bowled out for 113 in 15.2 overs.
Sohail Khan took 2-13 from his two overs while Sohail Tanvir, Aizaz Cheema and Saeed Ajmal grabbed a wicket each as the Pakistan attack put pressure on the Zimbabwe batsmen, who were outdone by accurate bowling and clean fielding.
Charles Coventry top-scored with 30 runs on his return to the Zimbabwe team while opener Chibhabha was next best with 28 runs.
"It`s always disappointing when you lose that way, but we must give credit to the opposition, they played really well," said Zimbabwe coach Alan Butcher. "We haven`t really been at our best but to get 200 was always going to be tough for us. We had a couple of bright spots. Chamu (Chibhabha) and (Charles) Coventry struck some good blows but no one got in to make an additional contribution."
Earlier, Hafeez hit a cracking half-century as Pakistan totaled 198-4 on a good batting track at Harare Sports Club. Hafeez, who has been consistent on the Zimbabwe tour, faced 48 balls and smashed six boundaries and three sixes before he was caught in the deep by Coventry off medium pacer Chibhabha.
Before his departure, Hafeez shared a second wicket stand of 74 runs with debutant Rameez Raja (23).
Raja was out when a flighted delivery by spinner Price trapped him leg before in the 17th over.
Shoaib Malik on 7 was the last wicket to fall after slogging a Kyle Jarvis ball to Masakadza in the deep on the last ball of the 19th over.
"It was an easy win and the way the guys started made it really easy," said Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq. "When you get a good start then you have to capitalize on that and I think that was a good one-day total.”
"They (Zimbabwe) are a young side, their performance is getting better. They were going on well at one point but maybe the total was too big for them today, but they are really improving day by day."