Pakistan all-rounder Nida Dar is having the time of her life at the moment after guiding Pakistan to back-to-back victories in the Women’s Asia Cup taking place in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia.
Nida claimed her first-ever five-wicket haul — also the first by any Pakistani woman — in a 23-run win over Sri Lanka and followed up that brilliant performance with another player-of-the-match display where she scored 41 runs and claimed four wickets for just five runs to help Pakistan thrash hosts Malaysia by 147 runs.
And the 31-year-old could not contain her excitement.
“This is like a dream come true and I am having the best days of my career,” she said. “Performing in every match for Pakistan is what every sportsperson wants and I am so happy that my performance helped the team win big. All the players in the team want to win and that is what matters the most.”
Pakistan next face arch-rivals India on June 9 and Nida hopes to replicate the performance against the defending champions, who only recently had their winning streak in the competition broken by Bangladesh.
“Next match will be tough for us but we will go with the same passion and energy against India to beat them and make place in the final,” she said.
Meanwhile, Pakistan captain Bismah Maroof, who also put in an outstanding performance against Malaysia — 62 runs off 27 balls — to lead from the front, has her eyes set on the India encounter and doesn’t want her team to drop their focus for the all-important encounter.
“Malaysia are not that strong, but a victory with this margin is certainly commendable. Next up is India and we all know how tough opponents they can be; we will give it our all and try to get past them to book a place in the final,” she said.
Talking about how the team is trying to improve on their weaknesses, Bismah said: “We have some issues in batting but we are working on that to make sure no space is left for the other team to take advantage of.”