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31-Aug-2022 02:09:00 GMT
Ban vs Afg - Group B, Sharjah

Spinners, Najibullah seal Super Four spot

Afghanistan 131 for 3 (Zadran 43*, Ibrahim 42*) beat Bangladesh 127 for 7 (Mosaddek 48*, Mujeeb 3-16, Rashid 3-22) by seven wickets

Sharjah: A late blitz from left-hander Najibullah Zadran helped Afghanistan secure direct qualification to the Super Four phase of the ongoing Asia Cup 2022 as he hit a flurry of sixes to help his team defeat Bangladesh by seven wickets in a Group B tie on Tuesday.

Afghanistan outplayed Bangladesh in all departments and also became the first team to qualify for the final four.

Though Bangladesh bowled tightly till 15th over, Najibullah Zadran scored a quickfire 43 off 17 balls with a four and six sixes to help his side secure a win.

Chasing 128, Afghanistan was off to a shaky start as Shakib Al Hasan's spin deceived wicketkeeper Rahmanullah Gurbaz, who was stumped by wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim for just 11 off 18 balls.

Ibrahim Zadran joined Hazratullah Zazai on the crease. The duo took their side through the powerplay without any further damage. At six overs, Afghanistan stood at 29/1 with Zazai (16*) and Zadran (2*).

Zadran-Zazai kept the scoreboard moving for their side, hitting some big shots occasionally.

Their 30-run stand was broken after Zazai was trapped lbw by Mosaddek Hossain for 23 off 26 balls.

Mohammad Nabi, the skipper was at the crease next. At the end of 10 overs, Afghanistan was at 48/2, with Zadran (11*) and Nabi (2*).

The stand between Nabi and Zadran did not last long. Medium pacer Mohammad Saifuddin delivered yet another leg before wicket dismissal for Bangladesh, sending back Nabi for 8 of 9 balls. Afghanistan was at 62/3.

At the end of 15 overs, Afghanistan was at 76/3, with Ibrahim Zadran (32*) and Najibullah Zadran at (1*).

Najibullah Zadran revived Afghan's hopes by hitting one six in the 16th and two sixes in the 17th over. This reduced the run-ball deficit to 26 runs in 18 balls.

The Zadran duo brought their 50-run stand in less than 30 balls. Zadran was on fire in the 18th over, smashing a four and two straight sixes to bring down the equation to four runs in the final two overs.

The Zadran duo helped Afghanistan finish the match on a winning note and qualify for the Super Four phase. Afghanistan won by seven wickets with nine balls to spare. Najibullah finished the match with a six.

Ibrahim finished at 42 off 41 balls with six fours while Najibullah scored a quickfire 43 off 17 balls with a four and sixes.

Mosaddek Hossain (1/12) was the leading bowler for Bangladesh. Shakib and Saifuddin took one wicket each too.

Top-class bowling spells by pacer Mujeeb ur Rahman and spinner Rashid Khan helped Afghanistan restrict Bangladesh to a sub-par 127/7 despite a fighting knock by Mosaddek Hossain in their Asia Cup 2022 Group B tie in Sharjah on Tuesday.

It was a great day on the field for Afghan bowlers as they restricted their opponent to 53/5 with some superb bowling.

Fighting knocks from Mosaddek Hossain (48*) Mahmudullah (25) helped Bangladesh attain a respectable score. Rashid Khan (3/22) and Mujeeb Ur Rahman (3/16) were just too good for Bangladesh.

Electing to bat first, Bangladesh was off to a shaky start. They lost their opener Mohammad Naim for just 6 runs off eight balls after spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman delivered brilliant carrom that pitched on length, just outside off stump and went through the gap between bat and pad to hit the leg stump. The score at this point was 7/1.

Captain Shakib Al Hasan was next up on the crease. Opener Anamul Haque's stay did not last long either as Rahman trapped him leg before wicket to take his second wicket of the match, sending him back to the hut for 5. Bangladesh was at this point, 13/2.

Hasan, playing his 100th T20I match, started off really well, smashing Naveen-ul-Haq for two straight fours in the fifth over. However, in the next over, Rahman intervened once again and cleared the veteran's stumps when he was going for a blind swing. Hasan was out for 11 off 9 balls. Bangladesh was in deep trouble at 24/3.

At the end of six overs in powerplay, Bangladesh was at 28/3, with Mushfiqur Rahim (1*) and Afif Hossain (2*) at the crease.

Miseries just would not end for Bangladesh as it was the spin of Rashid Khan that took the fourth scalp. Mushfiqur Rahim was trapped leg before wicket by Rashid for just one of four. Bangladesh was 28/4.

Mahmudullah and Afif Hossain were the pair that had to rebuild the innings for Bangladesh after such a collapse first seven overs.

After ten overs, Bangladesh was at 50/4, with Mahmudullah (11*) and Afif Hossain (12*) unbeaten at the crease.

The stand between the duo could last only 25 runs as Afif Hossain was trapped by Rashid for 12 off 15 balls. At this point, Bangladesh was 53/5.

Mosaddek Hossain joined Mahmudullah next. The duo kept the scoreboard ticking with a cautious approach.
At the end of 15 overs, Bangladesh was at 87/5, with both batters at 24* each.

The 36-run resistance shown by Mosaddek and Mahmudullah ended within 31 balls after Mahmudullah was caught by Ibrahim Zadran at deep midwicket while attempting a slog sweep. The batter was out for 25 off 27 balls and Rashid Khan got his third wicket of the match.

Mahedi Hasan joined Mossadek and continued Bangladesh' inning from the other end. Their 38-run stand ended when Mahedi was run out for just 14.

Bangladesh ended their innings at 127/7 in their 20 overs. Mosaddek made a fighting 48* off 31 balls and helped his side cross the 100-run mark.

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