Twitter Reactions: Najibullah and Nabi power Afghanistan to victory against a fighting Zimbabwe

Twitter Reactions: Najibullah and Nabi power Afghanistan to victory against a fighting Zimbabwe

The duo put on a partnership of 107 runs for the fifth wicket in 40 balls.

Najibullah Zadran
Najibullah Zadran. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Zimbabwe managed to lose their second match in the T20I tri-nation series. After going down against Bangladesh, Hamilton Masakadza and Co slumped to a 28-run defeat against Rashid Khan’s Afghanistan at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur. The drubbing means that Zimbabwe now have to win both their last league matches to have any chance of qualifying for the final.

Najibullah and Nabi step up

Zimbabwe elected to field first, but the decision didn’t quite work out as the Afghans plundered 197 runs in their 20 overs. Rahmanullah Gurbaz (43) was impressive on debut and made use of the powerplay, hitting five fours and a couple of sixes. Hazratullah Zazai (13) couldn’t quite get going. Najeeb Tarakai (!4) and Asghar Afghan (!4) tried their best, but got out after getting their eyes in.

Thereafter, Najibullah Zadran (69*) and Mohammad Nabi (38) then pressed the accelerator and put on 107 runs for the fifth wicket in a mere 40 balls. There was a stage when the duo smacked seven sixes in succession. Yet another time, Zimbabwe failed to put a lid on the run-scoring at the death. The Afghans hit 15 sixes. For Zimbabwe, Chatara and Sean Williams picked up a couple of wickets.

Zimbabwe go down fighting in Mirpur

Brendan Taylor (27) started Afghanistan’s run-chase in an aggressive manner. But the veteran played one shot too many and fell prey to Fareed Malik. Masakadza perished to a run-out. Craig Ervine and Williams yet again floundered with the bat. A lot was expected to Ryan Burl (25), who decimated the Tigers the other night. The southpaw cleared the ropes two times and was castled by Rashid Khan.

Prior to that, Rashid also accounted for the wicket of Tinotenda Mutombodzi. Regis Chakabva (42), who made his T20I comeback after four years, top scored for Zimbabwe. Neville Madziva deposited a couple over the ropes, and he became Gulbadin Naib’s first victim. Chakabva wielded the willow to good effect at the death, but it was never going to be enough to take Zimbabwe over the finish line.

Here is how Twitter reacted to Afghanistan’s thumping win