Mujeeb Zadran shines on debut as Afghanistan crush Ireland by 138 runs
Afghanistan 238-9 (Jamal 53) beat
Ireland 100 (Mujeeb 4-24) by 138 runs
First One-Day International in Sharjah
Mujeeb Zadran and Rashid Khan shared seven wickets between them as Afghanistan bowled out Ireland for 100 runs and completed a massive 138 run victory in the first One-Day International in Sharjah to take a 1-0 lead in the series.
Ireland won the toss and elected to bowl first. A tight opening spell from Tim Murtagh (3-28) saw the back of Javed Ahmadi (10) while Boyd Rankin (4-44) claimed the other opener Ihsanullah Janat (10) after he edged one to the keeper.
Just as Afghanistan were reeling at 22 for two, Rahmat Shah (50) and Nasir Jamal (53) shared a 105 run stand for the third wicket to resurrect the innings.
The partnership came at a healthy rate but both the batsmen fell on reaching their respective half-centuries with Rankin and Murtagh once again sharing the wickets. Ireland capitalised on the opening as they picked four wickets in a span of five runs and were reduced to 132 for six.
However, late contributions from Rashid Khan (48) and Shafiqullah Shafiq (36) provided the much needed momentum at the end of the innings as Afghanistan posted 238 for nine in their 50 overs. Rankin and Murtagh were the pick of the Ireland bowlers as they shared seven wickets between them.
Ireland got off to a worse possible start in the chase with six of their top seven batsmen falling for single digit scores. Mujeeb (4-24) was the wrecker in chief and picked four wickets on his maiden outing while Dawlat Zadran (2-13) impressed with the opening spell that started with three consecutive maiden overs.
Only William Porterfield (35) and Stuart Poynter (27 not out) showed some resilience for Ireland, who were bowled out for just 100 runs in 31.4 overs.
The 138-run win has given Afghanistan 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
© Cricket World 2017