Millennium Post

Maiden win: Afghan lions down Scots in humdinger

Maiden win: Afghan lions down Scots in humdinger
After skipper Mohamad Nabi won the toss and decided to bowl first, Afghanistan’s opening bowlers Shapoor Zadran (4/38) and Dawlat Zadran (3/29) helped them bowl Scotland out for 210. In reply, Javed Ahmadi (51) played a crucial role other than right-hander Shenwari. Shenwari was supported well by Hamid Hassan (15*). Hassan and Shenwari put up a 60-run stand for the ninth wicket befoe the latter fell with his side still requiring 19 runs to win. Shapoor (not out 12) and Hassan survived some anxious moments to see the team home with a wicket and three balls to spare. With this win, Cup debutants Afghanistan registered their first victory in the tournament.

Earlier, lower-order batsmen Alasdair Evans (28) and Majd Haq (31) put up a 62-run stand for the ninth wicket to ensure that Scotland cross the 200-run mark.

Opener Calum McLeaod failed to open his account after facing 10 balls as the batsman offered a simple catch to Najibullah Zadran at backward point off a Dawlat delivery. Medium pacer Hassan (1/32) then trapped new batsman Hamish Gardiner (5) plumb in front to leave Scotland in a spot of bother at 38/2 in 11 overs. It was a struggle for Gardiner as he couldn’t get it going despite staying at the crease for 20 balls. Kyle Coetzer (25), who scored 71 against England in their last match, looked good but he also perished. Medium pacer Dawlat ran through his defence to leave them reeling at 40/3.

Matt Machchan (31) and skipper Preston Mommsen (23) were in a damage control mode and they put up a 53-run partnership for the fourth wicket before  Nabi rattled the stumps of the former.

Gulbadin Naib then forced an edge off Mommsen’s bat which was gleefully accepted by wicketkeeper Afsar Zafai to leave Scotland in further trouble at 95/5 in 22.2 overs. Left-arm pacer Shapoor started his wicket-taking spree, dismissing Matthew Cross (15), Josh Davey (1). Dawlat hunted back to take the wicket of Richie Berrington (25) that dismantled Scotland at 144/4 in 36.4 overs. Evans and Haw came to Scotland’s rescue before both of them were dismissed by Shapoor.

While defending the total, Evans (2/30) played a key role by dismissing opener Nawroz Mangal (7) and Ashghar Stanikzai (4) to dent the Afghan chase. Ahmadi hit eight fours to socre a 51-ball 50, leaving the team precariously placed at 85/3 in 18.1 overs. Within next 12 runs and 5.3 overs, Afghanistan were 97/7.

This is when Shenwari started his historic innings and guided the team home with the support of lower-oprder batsmen. He belted five sixes and seven fours to bring his team back into the game. With 19 runs still needed, Shenwari holed out to Davy off Haq. But Shapoor and Hassan ensured his valiant knock doesn’t go waste.


Scotland innings

KJ Coetzer b Dawlat Zadran 25, CS MacLeod    c Najibullah Zadran b Dawlat Zadran 0, HJW Gardiner lbw b Hamid Hassan 5, MW Machan b Mohammad Nabi 31, PL Mommsen*    c †Afsar Zazai b Gulbadin Naib 23, RD Berrington c †Afsar Zazai b Dawlat Zadran 25, MH Cross† c †Afsar Zazai b Shapoor Zadran 15, JH Davey c Hamid Hassan b Shapoor Zadran 1, RM Haq c Gulbadin Naib b Shapoor Zadran 31, AC Evans c Mohammad Nabi b Shapoor Zadran 28, I Wardlaw not out 1; Extras (lb 12, w 12, nb 1) 25; Total (all out; 50 overs) 210; FoW 1-7, 2-38, 3-40, 4-93, 5-95, 6-132, 7-134, 8-144,  9-206, 10-210; Bowling Shapoor Zadran 10-1-38-4, Dawlat Zadran 10-1-29-3, Hamid Hassan 10-1-32-1, Gulbadin Naib 9-0-53-1, Mohammad Nabi 10-0-38-1, Javed Ahmadi 1-0-8-0

Afghanistan innings 
Javed Ahmadi c Machan b Berrington 51, Nawroz Mangal b Evans 7, Asghar Stanikzai c †Cross b Evans 4, S Shenwari c Davey b Haq 96, Mohammad Nabi* lbw b Davey 1, Afsar Zazai† lbw b Berrington 0, Najibullah Zadran c Haq b Berrington 4, Gulbadin Naib c Haq b Davey 0, D Zadran c Mommsen b Berrington 9, Hamid Hassan not out 15, S Zadran not out 12; Extras (lb 1, w 10, nb 1) 12; Total (9 wickets; 49.3 overs) 211; FoW 1-42, 2-46, 3-85, 4-88, 5-89, 6-96, 7-97, 8-132, 9-192; Bowling I Wardlaw 9.3-0-61-0, JH Davey 10-1-34-2, AC Evans 10-1-30-2, RM Haq 10-0-45-1, RD Berrington 10-0-40-4
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