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Rashid picks five as Afghanistan take 2-1 lead against Zimbabwe

Rashid Khan (centre) picked a five-wicket haul
Rashid Khan (centre) picked a five-wicket haul

Afghanistan 158-4 (Rahmat 56) beat
Zimbabwe 154 (Rashid 5-24) by six wickets
Third One-Day International in Sharjah

Rashid Khan continued his rich vein of form with a five-wicket haul as Afghanistan bowled out Zimbabwe for 154 runs and later chased down the target in the 28th over with six wickets in hand in the third One-Day International in Sharjah to take a 2-1 lead in the series.

Zimbabwe were dealt early blows after they won the toss and decided to bat first. Dawlat Zadran (1-28) had Hamilton Masakadza (9) caught in the slips but Solomon Mire (22) hit a couple of sixes to inject some momentum into the innings.

A double strike from Mujeeb Zadran (3-45) in the eighth over saw both Brendan Taylor (9) and Mire dismissed as Zimbabwe were reduced to 58 for three in the first powerplay.

Craig Ervine (39) and Sikandar Raza (38) had other plans as they counterattacked the Afghanistan bowlers with a swift 73 run stand that saw them hit five boundaries and three sixes between them.

However, it was a matter of time when Rashid (5-24) tormented the middle and lower order with his variations and eventually bowled Zimbabwe for 154 runs. Zimbabwe lost their final seven wickets in a span of just 37 runs.

Afghanistan had a tentative start to their innings with Tendai Chatara (2-18) making an impact with the new ball to remove Ihsanullah Janat (12) and Mohammad Shahzad (7) but Rahmat Shah (56) looked impressive once again as Afghanistan went into the dinner break with a score of 65 for two in 11 overs.

On resumption, Afghanistan had no trouble whatsoever as both Rahmat and Nasir Jamal (51) completing their respective half-centuries to take them to the course of victory which they completed with six wickets in hand. Rashid without doubt was named the man of the match for his five-wicket haul.

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