Pakistan, chasing a 130-run target, maintained composure to defeat Afghanistan by one wicket and advance to the Asia Cup final. Last man Naseem Shah broke Afghanistan’s hearts by hitting two consecutive sixes with 11 needed off the final over. Now Sunday’s Asia Cup final will feature Pakistan vs. Sri Lanka.
Earlier, Pakistan held Afghanistan to 129 for six in the ongoing Asia Cup Super 4 match at the Sharjah Cricket Associations Stadium thanks to an outstanding bowling performance by Haris Rauf. As Afghanistan struggled to build on a promising start provided by openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Hazratullah Zazai, Haris returned statistics of two for 26. Naseem Shah, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Hasnain, and Mohammad Nawaz each claimed one wicket in addition to Rauf.
Afghanistan’s batting debacle
For Afghanistan, Ibrahim Zadran played a vital 35-run cameo while Zazai also scored 21. The opening pair of Hazratullah and Gurbaz gave Afghanistan a decent start but then wickets kept falling like bowling pins. Allrounder Rashid Khan too could only contribute 18* runs with the bat. As Afghanistan’s inning collapsed at 129.
Pakistan’s Shadab Khan won the Player of the match for his allround contribution of 1/27 with the ball and scored 36 runs in 26 balls with the bat.
With Afghanistan’s loss all hopes of India in Asia Cup gets shattered now India will play their last match against Afghanistan in their last Super 4s match.
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