Azam hits 120 as Pakistan brush West Indies aside


Babar Azam's maiden one-day international century inspired Pakistan to a 111-run victory over West Indies in the first of three 50-over clashes on Friday.

Azam hit 120 off 131 deliveries to send Pakistan on the path to victory, the hosts finishing on 284-9 in Sharjah while the tourists' reply fell flat.

A floodlight failure shortened the Pakistan innings by an over after a lengthy delay, but West Indies fell well short of their 287-run target - adjusted via the Duckworth-Lewis method.

The match got off to a nightmare start for Pakistan, who saw captain Azhar Ali nick behind for a duck off the first ball.

But it was Azar who arrived at the crease to replace his skipper, and the 21-year-old proved an assured presence as he chose his shots well.

Azar got lucky when he survived an lbw appeal off Sulieman Benn (1-46), but he was eventually seen off by a spectacular Kieron Pollard catch off Carlos Brathwaite (3-54).

Pollard was heading over the boundary but hurled the ball back onto the field of play to collect the ball.

Sharjeel Khan had already chipped in with 54 and, while Pakistan's supporting cast were unable to match those standards, West Indies' limp response gave them little cause for concern.

Marlon Samuels top-scored with 46 but Sunil Narine (23) was the only other man to surpass 20, with Mohammad Nawaz (4-42) and Hasan Ali (3-14) impressing with ball in hand for Pakistan.