Rotterdam: Tom Cooper’s maiden ODI century went in vain as Afghanistan comfortably defeated the Netherlands by six wickets with 45 balls to spare in Voorburg while Scotland overcame a spirited fight back by Kenya to win by six runs in Rotterdam.
Today’s victories by Afghanistan and Scotland has set-up a mouth-watering winner-takes-all match in Rotterdam. As both Afghanistan and Scotland are on three wins each, the winner will progress to the final while the losing side will take on the Netherlands on Saturday in the third and fourth place play-off clash.
Cooper continued his fine run of form with the bat when he scored his maiden ODI century but still ended up on the losing side.
Cooper, who had scores of 87, 67 and 39 previously in the tournament, hit a polished 101 off 155 balls with nine fours to take his tournament aggregate to 294 runs. However, he found little support and the next highest score was Atse Buurman’s 23 as the Netherlands limped to 202-8 from 50 overs against a purposeful Afghanistan attack led by Khaliq Dad who finished as the pick of the bowlers with 3-30.
Helped by half-centuries by captain Nawroz Mangal and wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Shahzad, Afghanistan achieved the victory target in 42.3 overs with six wickets to spare.
Mangal remained unbeaten on 67 from 53 deliveries with 10 fours and a six while Shahzad’s 63-ball 55 included eight fours. Shahzad dominated a third wicket partnership of 84 runs with Karim Sadiq (26) after Afghanistan was reduced to 8-2 before Mangal and Asghar Salamkhail (28 not out) put on 93 runs for the unbroken fifth wicket.