Maxwell and Starc star in victory
AN inspired cameo from Glenn Maxwell in his second one-day international helped Australia to a four-wicket victory with ten balls to spare, after Mitchell Starc's five-wicket haul reduced Pakistan to 198 all out in Sharjah.
George Bailey's unbeaten 57 and Michael Clarke's 66 held the Australia innings together but when the latter fell to Mohammed Hafeez, Australia looked in trouble at 5 for 121 with an increasingly sluggish run rate meaning even a meagre total under 200 seemed a big ask.
Victorian all-rounder Maxwell, who made his debut against Afghanistan at the weekend - and did not shine with the ball with his four overs going for 27 - changed the course of the game by hitting 38 runs at a run a ball including the first six of the Australian innings.
When he finally fell, adjudged leg before while attempting to reverse-sweep to the returning Saaed Ajmal (3 for 30), Australia was only 15 runs away from the target with 27 balls remaining.
As expected Pakistan's superb spinners caused Australia problems throughout.