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Afghanistan’s Samiullah Shinwari rues luck as Pakistan edge to victory

Samiullah Shinwari
Samiullah Shinwari
©Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Afghanistan all-rounder Samiullah Shinwari bemoaned his team’s luck after a dropped catch and an untimely injury proved costly against Pakistan.

  • Dropped catch and injury crucial in three-wicket defeat to in-form Pakistan
  • Afghanistan switch focus to final group game against West Indies next Thursday

Imad Wasim, under huge pressure to guide Pakistan to their target of 228, totally miscued a delivery from skipper Gulbadin Naib and sent the ball looping high into the sky.

With all eyes on him at extra cover, Asghar Afghan circled in an attempt to perfectly position himself only to completely mis-time his grab and fail to get anywhere near the ball.

 That was the main turning point,” said Samiullah, after Imad went on to make a match-winning 49 not out to steer Pakistan to a nervy three-wicket ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup win at Headingley. “It was a misunderstanding with the ball.

“We didn’t say anything at the end of the game. We just said it was an unlucky day. Nothing worked for us at the end because after five hours or something like that, it was 49 runs from Imad that cost us.

“A target of 230 was very difficult. We looked at it beforehand and we thought 230 would be like 300 on that wicket. We bowled very well but we lost our main bowler.”

Samiullah was referring to right-arm paceman Hamid Hassan, who suffered a hamstring injury and was only able to bowl two overs at the start of Pakistan’s reply.

“It was a very close match,” he added. “We lost our main bowler, he would have made it more difficult for the batsmen.

“I think we did very well but, the thing is, luck is not with us. Bowling, fielding, everything was good but the luck is just not with us.

“With 10 overs to go the match was in our hands. Pakistan needed 72 more runs to win with six wickets gone. It was very tough for them but Imad then came out and played very well.”

 Shinwari, who contributed 19 not out with the bat and returned figures of 0/32 in eight overs with the ball, added Afghanistan would do all they can to finally claim their first victory of the tournament back at Headingley on Thursday.

 “We are giving 100 percent and will again try our best against West Indies in our last match to win for our fans,” he said.