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Australia seal series 4-1 after record Warner-Head stand

Reuters logo Reuters 26-01-2017
FILE PHOTO - Cricket - Australia v South Africa - Fifth ODI cricket match © REUTERS/Mike Hutchings FILE PHOTO - Cricket - Australia v South Africa - Fifth ODI cricket match

An insatiable David Warner blasted a career-best 179 and dominated Australia's highest ever one-day partnership with fellow centurion Travis Head to help secure their 57-run victory in the fifth and final match against Pakistan on Thursday.

Babar Azam (100) and Sharjeel Khan (79) kept alive Pakistan's hopes of chasing down a 370-run victory target but they collapsed for 312 in the final over as Australia wrapped up the series 4-1.

For Pakistan, Shoaib Malik retired hurt after scoring 10, while Umar Akmal made a brisk 46 down the order.

With the hosts having already taken an unassailable lead in the series, the contest was of merely academic interest but Warner's hunger for runs was on display in the high-scoring match at the Adelaide Oval again.

Warner went into the match with five centuries in his last 10 one-day innings and the diminutive left-hander brought up his sixth of the season in just 78 balls.

He was aided by his luck in the process.

After Australia elected to bat, Warner could have been dismissed from the first ball of the match but an airborne Azhar Ali spilled the edge at second slip off Mohammad Amir.

Some 32 overs later, Amir was the culprit as he floored a simple chance after Warner, then on 130, had gone after Hasan Ali, with the clanger leaving Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur shaking his head in dismay in the dressing room.

The 30-year-old set the tempo in the record 284-run stand with stop-gap opening partner Head, who went on to make 128, his maiden one-day century.

The previous Australia record was the 260 Warner put on with Steve Smith for the second wicket in a 2015 World Cup match against minnows Afghanistan.

Having bettered his previous career-best of 178, made in that match against Afghanistan, Warner was in sight of the 200-mark when he started cramping.

The opener was eventually caught at point off Junaid Khan who dismissed home captain Smith in the same over. Warner belted 19 fours and five sixes in his 128-ball assault at the Adelaide Oval.

Head hit three sixes in his 137-ball knock and was one of five Australia wickets to fall in the final six overs of their innings.

(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; Editing by John O'Brien/Jeremy Gaunt)

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