Maxwell accused of disrespectful snub
AUSTRALIAN allrounder Glenn Maxwell has been accused of snubbing Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed in a bitter moment following Australia's loss to Pakistan in the Tri-series final.
Maxwell was smashed out of the attack after initially picking up 2/2 as he opened the bowling for Australia.
The talented Victorian's final two overs with the ball went for 0/33 and he's now been accused of taking that frustration out on Ahmed as Pakistan reached Australia's total of 183 with four balls remaining.
Videos posted on Twitter appear to show Maxwell walking past Ahmed before going on to shake hands with other members of the Pakistan team, including Shoaib Malik.
No Pakistan player or official has spoken publicly to confirm the snub occurred.
However, cricket commentators were quick to accuse Maxwell of "terrible sportsmanship" in an era where the Aussie cricket team is trying to repair its reputation following the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa.
Maxwell's apparent handshake snub in Harare has not helped new Test captain Tim Paine's new commitment to sportsmanship.
Maxwell had earlier given Australia a perfect start to defend its first innings score of 8/183 from its 20 overs.
He had Pakistan 2/2 after one over as a shock option to open the bowling.
Australia's climb up the Twenty20 rankings has now been halted as Pakistan opening batsman Fakhar Zaman blasted a sublime 91 from 46 balls.
Zaman combined with veteran Shoaib Malik (43 not out) for a fourth-wicket partnership of 107 as Pakistan passed Australia's total with four balls to spare - their highest successful run-chase in T20Is.
The pair punished the bowling of Ashton Agar and Jack Wildermuth with 16 runs each in consecutive overs midway through the innings to set Pakistan on their way to victory.
Zaman took out the player of the series for hitting 278 runs at an average of 55.6.
Earlier, recalled opening batsman D'Arcy Short responded from being dropped for the final group game by hitting 76 from 53 balls to boost Australia's innings. Short put on 95 for the first wicket with Aaron Finch (47 from 27 balls) despite him struggling for momentum early in his innings.
But when the pair were dismissed, Australia's momentum nosedived as they managed just 6-46 from their last five overs.
"I thought we should've got up around 200," Finch said after the game.
"Towards the end they bowled really well and we just kept losing a few wickets which stalls your momentum a touch.
"I thought we started off very well with the ball but we probably lost our way in the middle there, Fakhar Zaman played a hell of a knock."
Ahmed said his team was able to take control mid-way through their run chase.
"It's a great team effort, credit to the bowlers," Ahmed said.
"There were some dropped catches but we took the momentum in the second innings."
Zaman said: "I've played here in 2016, the wickets were not that good then.
"Hard work in nets is the main thing. I take time at the start and play my natural game."
- with AAP, AP