Shoaib Malik played a suburb 51-run knock under pressure as Pakistan defeated Afghanistan by three wickets in the Super Four thriller at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Friday. Chasing a competitive 258 to win, Pakistan got off to a horrid start, losing Fakhar Zaman in the first over for a duck. But Imam-ul-Haq (80) and Babar Azam (60) stitched a giant 154-run partnership for the third wicket, taking the team closer to the target. But successive dismissals of both the batsmen brought the Pakistan under pressure. Afghanistan, then continued to pile on more pressure with tight spells from spinners but Malik hung on at the centre taking the score board forward with singles and doubles. Towards the end, Malik showcased experience and class taking the team across the line with three balls to spare. The majestic knock from Malik came off just 43 deliveries. For Afghanistan, Rashid Khan was once again the most impressive bowler, taking three wickets. Mujeeb ur Rehman too chipped in with two wickets but couldn’t restrict Pakistan in the run chase.