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AFG v IRE, 2nd ODI, Review: Rashid Khan 6-wicket haul guides Afghanistan home

Afganistan Rashid Khan
Rashid Khan. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Asghar Stanikzai won the toss on a warm and sunny day at the Greater Noida Complex Stadium and elected to bat first. Afghanistan’s form of late has been incredible after they swept past Ireland in the T20 Internationals 3-0, with an amazing repeat performance in the first ODI here at Greater Noida.

There were changes from both the sides as Shafiqullah replaces Hashmatullah in the play eleven for Stanikzai’s side and the two changes for Porterfield’s side being Andy McBrine and Andy Balbirnie replacing Kevin O’Brein and Mulder, who is out with a side strain.

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Afghanistan Innings:

Afghanistan’s openers have shown what damage they could do in the first ODI. Mohammad Shahzad and Noor Ali Zadran picked up from where they left in the first ODI with another 50 run partnership.

Shahzad was the natural aggressor in this partnership. Shahzad began to attack Tim Murtagh in as early as the 2nd over of the innings when he smoked two boundaries off consecutive deliveries.

Murtagh’s over was the spark that the Afghanistan team needed with 13 runs coming off in just six balls. The Tigers’ opening pair added another 17 runs in the next over with three boundaries coming off Chase’s over.

The opening pair reached 50 in the first ball of the 8th over in the innings, finishing the 8th over with 60 runs on the board. Shahzad brought up with a half-century in the 10th over of the innings off just 33 balls.

The pair went on to add another 30 runs before the left-arm spinner George Dockrell caught Shahzad right in front. Rahmat Shah joined the crease alongside Noor Ali. Noor Ali was the next to go back to hut when a sharp throw from the deep fielder caught him short of the crease.

Asghar Stanikzai and Rahmat Shah had added 96 runs before the latter got dismissed for a well-made 68 runs off just 70 balls. Samiullah Shenwari joined the captain at the crease with the score being 190 for the loss of 3 wickets. Stanikzai raced off to a fifty with a boundary and a sixer back to back in the 39th over of the innings. 19 runs from the 39th over was the momentum that the Tigers’ needed.

Chase’s 8th over of the match and Afghanistan’s 41st over of the innings was the game changer, with 23 runs coming off the over which included three massive sixes.

Paul Stirling picked up what would be his first wicket of the innings dismissing Shenwari for 14 runs. With Stanikzai batting at 98 and Afghanistan’s score reading 279/4, it was only matter of time before the captain brought up an amazing debut century with a single to the sweeper cover in the 46th over.

Stirling picked his second wicket of the innings with the dismissal of Mohammad Nabi, who scored 14. Chase, who went for a plenty earlier in the innings picked up the key wicket of the Afghanistan captain Stanikzai, who was dismissed for a well-made 101 in just 90 balls.

Paul Stirling’s last over was the difference between Afghanistan reaching 350 and ending up getting only 338 runs. The offie picked up three wickets in the final over to record the best bowling figure in ODIs for Ireland with the figures of 6-55 in his ten overs. It was also Afghanistan’s highest score in an ODI.

Ireland’s Innings

Ed Joyce and Paul Stirling walked out to the middle of Ireland’s reply to chase a mammoth 339 runs in just the 50 overs. The duo got off to an amazing start with 50 runs off in the 9th over of the innings with Joyce scoring 29 runs and Stirling 28 runs. The duo went on to add another 50 runs in quick time in just the 16th over of the innings.

Both the openers brought up their 50’s in just the 17th over of the innings. Joyce was the first one to be dismissed as he was beaten by a straight delivery on the off-stump. Porterfield and Stirling picked off from there.

The pair brought up Ireland’s 150 in the 24th over of innings. Stirling picked and ripped apart the Afghanistan bowlers with a boundary and a couple of sixes in consecutive overs. Commentator’s curse saw his innings come to an end when he missed a straighter delivery from Rashid Khan to get dismissed at 95 in the 27th over of the innings.

Rashid picked up his first and second wicket in the span of 2 overs, picking up Neil O’Brien in the next over. A partnership began to blossom between Balbirnie and Porterfield before Porterfield was dismissed for 45 runs in the 34th over by Rashid Khan.

Dawlat Zadran picked up the wicket of Balbirnie, dismissed for 11 runs. Thompson four boundaries in Nabi’s over took the game to the Tigers’. Rashid picked his 4th wicket of the match courtesy of a clueless shot from Gary Wilson.

Dawalat and Rashid picked up the last four wickets with two apiece. Rashid ended with a spell of 6/45, which once again strengthened Sunrisers Hyderabad’s confidence.

Paul Stirling was declared the Man of the Match for his six wickets and 95 runs.

Brief Score:

Afghanistan: 338 in 50 overs (Asghar Stanikzai 101, Paul Stirling 6/55)

Ireland: 304 in 47.3 overs (Paul Stirling 95, Rashid Khan 6/45)

Afghanistan won by 34 runs

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