SL v Ban, Match 3, Asia Cup 2022: Afghanistan sail through to Super 4 stage
Afghanistan became the first side to qualify for Super 4 stage of Asia Cup 2022 with a seven wicket win over Bangladesh at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Tuesday night.
In a Group B encounter, after opting to bat, Bangladesh made 127 for seven in their 20 overs and in response Afghanistan chased down the score in 18.3 overs to finish on 131 for three.
Earlier, Bangladesh lost wickets at regular intervals. Bangladesh was reduced to 28 for four with their top-order being dismantled by Afghanistan spinners. Then, there was bit of recovery thanks to a 25 run stand for the fifth wicket between Afif Hossain and Mahmudhullah. There was another revival thanks to a 36 run sixth wicket stand between Mosaddek Hossain and Mahmudullah. Towards the end Hossain held the innings together with a smart unbeaten 48 off 31 balls with four boundaries and one six. Bangladesh finished on 127 for seven in their 20 overs. For Afghanistan the best bowlers were Mujeeb ur Rahman (3-16) and Rashid Khan (3-22).
In their reply Afghanistan lost their openers Hazratullah Zazai and Rahmanullah Gurbaz cheaply. But then Ibrahim Zadran revived the chase with Najibullah Zadran. Both the batters batted with gay abandon as they snatched the match from Bangladesh. The Bangladesh bowlers struggled to stem the flow of runs. Only captain Shakib Al Hasan exerted pressure of any kind. Najibullah and Ibrahim added 69 runs for the fourth wicket in an unbroken stand which sealed the win for Afghanistan in 18.3 overs as they finished on 131 for three. Ibrahim finished on an unbeaten 42 off 41 balls with four boundaries, while Najib struck 43 off 17 balls with one boundaries and six sixes.
Bangladesh: 127-7 (20)
Fall of wickets: 1-7 (Mohammad Naim-1.6 ov), 2-13 (Anamul Haque-3.6 ov), 3-24 (Shakib Al Hasan-5.2 ov), 4-28 (Mushfiqur Rahim-6.2 ov), 5-53 (Afif Hossain-10.3 ov), 6-89 (Mahmudullah-15.4 ov), 7-127 (Mahedi Hasan-19.5 ov)
Afghanistan: 131-3 (18.3)
Fall of wickets: 1-15 (Rahmanullah Gurbaz-4.1 ov), 2-45 (Hazratullah Zazai-9.2 ov), 3-62 (Mohammad Nabi-12.6 ov)
Top Tournament Stats - Asia Cup T20 2022
Result: Afghanistan won by seven wickets
Afghanistan: Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wicket-keeper), Ibrahim Zadran, Najibullah Zadran, Karim Janat, Mohammad Nabi (captain), Rashid Khan, Azmatullah Omarzai, Naveen-ul-Haq, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Fazalhaq Farooqi
Bangladesh: Mohammad Naim, Anamul Haque, Shakib Al Hasan (captain), Afif Hossain, Mushfiqur Rahim (wicket-keeper), Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Mahedi Hasan, Mohammad Saifuddin, Taskin Ahmed, Mustafizur Rahman
Toss: Bangladesh, elected to bat
Venue: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah
Start time: 1400 hrs GMT
Match officials: Asif Yaqoob, Jayaraman Madanagopal (On-field Umpires); Anil Chaudhary (TV Umpire); Ahsan Raza (Reserve Umpire); Jeff Crowe (Match-referee)