Sunday, April 21, 2024

Afghanistan rout Scotland in T20 World Cup match

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Sharjah – Off-spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman and leg-spinner Rashid Khan routed Scotland for 60 as Afghanistan started the ICC Twenty20 World Cup with a massive 130-run victory on Monday in the United Arab Emirates.

Mujeeb claimed three wickets in an over to finish with 5-20 while Rashid (4-9) ran through the tail quickly to dismiss Scotland in just 10.2 overs and raise Afghanistan’s biggest win in a T20 International.

Afghanistan had earlier posted a daunting total of 190-5 in their opening Group 2 match after skipper Mohammad Nabi won the toss and elected to bat.

All of Afghanistan’s top-order batsmen were among the runs and hit big sixes with Najibullah Zadran leading the way by scoring 59 off 34 balls, which contained five fours and three sixes.

Rahmanullah Gurbaz (46 off 37 balls) smashed four sixes while opening batsman Hazratullah Zazai (44) hit three sixes and three fours in a 30-ball blitz to set the tone for a big total.

Scotland’s opener George Munsey (25) started the run-chase in style by reverse sweeping off-spinner Nabi for a six and a four in the first over as they raced to 27-0 in three overs.

But the wheels came off quickly in the fourth over when Mujeeb grabbed three wickets off five deliveries. Mujeeb bowled captain Kyle Coetzer and followed it up by trapping Calum MacLeod lbw off the next ball.

Richie Berrington was out soon after when Mujeeb had him leg before wicket – again on the backfoot.

Recalled wicketkeeper Mohammad Shahzad then took a stunning diving catch to dismiss Matthew Cross off fast bowler Naveen-ul-Haq before Mujeeb quickly made it 37-5 when he rattled Munsey’s stump in his next over. (EZS)

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