22 September 2018

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Sunday 12 February 2012



SHARJAH: Pakistan captain Misbah-ul Haq Saturday praised the Afghan team's fighting spirit despite their loss in a one-day international to his side, saying they could give other teams a tough time.

Pakistan beat Afghanistan by seven wickets in the first-ever one-day international between the two countries here on Friday.

Despite losing, Afghanistan put up a spirited show before a 15,000-strong crowd, hitting six sixes in their 195 and taking two early wickets when Pakistan batted.

Misbah said he was impressed by Afghanistan's performance.

"It was a good game. The way the Afghanistan team played I am really happy. They have some really good, exciting cricketers," he said, adding it was "a good beginning" for the Afghan side.

Afghanistan earned one-day status in 2009 and have since achieved several milestones, qualifying for the World Twenty20 in the Caribbean and finishing silver medallists in the Asian Games in China, both in 2010.

They also won the Inter-Continental Cup, meant for associate teams, in 2010.

"I think Afghanistan can give tough time to Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and even to better teams. It is all about experience and if they play more cricket against good teams in the world, they are going to improve."

Misbah said Afghanistan were a dangerous limited over side.

"T20 or for one-day, this is a dangerous side. They can still improve and they have excellent fighting spirit. They put in a lot of effort in fielding."

Leg-spinner Shahid Afridi took 5-36 which kept Afghanistan to 195, still a good total in Misbah's opinion.

Paceman Dawlat Zadran then dismissed opener Mohammad Hafeez (eight) and Asad Shafiq (20) before Younis Khan (70 not out) and Imran Farhat (52) saw Pakistan through in the 38th over.

"Their fast bowlers bowled really well and their batting start was very good. I think on this wicket batting was not easy and the score of 195 was really good because even Sri Lanka had struggled on this wicket last year," said Misbah.

"They have many positives to take from this game."

Afghanistan captain Nawroz Mangal said he was satisfied with his team's performance.

"Our start was very good. Unfortunately the middle order collapsed and that prevented us from making a big score but we got two early wickets and overall I am satisfied with my team's performance against a top side," said Mangal.

Mangal, 27, said there were several lessons for his team.

"We learned a lot from this game. The most significant thing which we learned from this game... is the maturity how to play a one-day game, especially against a tougher side."

Afghanistan will play in the World Twenty20 qualifiers in the United Arab Emirates next month


Saturday 11 February 2012


AUCKLAND: Martin Guptill's continued domination of the Zimbabwe bowling steered New Zealand to a seven-wicket win with 19 balls to spare in the opening Twenty20 match at Eden Park Saturday.

Guptill's imperious 91 not out off 54 deliveries was the backbone of New Zealand's 160 for three, and along with Kane Williamson (48), they overtook Zimbabwe's 159 for eight in the 17th over.

The New Zealand opener has seldom been troubled by the Zimbabwe attack and his 91 was his fifth successive half-century against the tourists following 51, 70, 77 and 85 in the Test and three one-day internationals.

His partnership with Williamson put on 137 for the third wicket after New Zealand made a shaky start to their run chase.

In an eventful second over, the first two deliveries from Kyle Jarvis were dispatched to the boundary by Rob Nicol before the bowler dismissed both Nicol and Brendon McCullum in two legitimate balls separated by a wide.

New Zealand were then in trouble at two for 15 but Zimbabwe were unable to cash in on the pressure and it was to be another 15 others before they were able to take a third wicket.

After 10 overs, New Zealand were 101 for two and the outcome was already assured. There was no sign of any respite for Zimbabwe in a nightmare tour where they have been thrashed in the one-off Test and three ODIs.

Guptill raced ahead hitting five fours and six sixes while a more circumspect Williamson reached 48 before he was run out taking an unnecessary single when New Zealand were then only eight runs short of their target.

Two balls later and the game was over with Guptill belting a six and a two leaving debutant batsman Colin de Grandhomme to have a brief time in the middle and not face a ball.

Jarvis was the only successful Zimbabwe bowler taking two for 32 after his side had won the toss and posted what should have been a competitive 159 for eight.

Hamilton Masakadza blasted 53 off 36 balls at the top of the innings and Elton Chigumbura finished off at the tail with 48 off 24 deliveries to contribute the bulk of the Zimbabwe runs.

Zimbabwe also had a rocky start to their innings with Brendan Taylor bowled by New Zealand debutant Michael Bates for three in the second over and Forster Mutizwa followed in the next over without scoring to be two for 16.

Bates, who also claimed Chigumbura in the final over, finished his first international bowling spell with an impressive three for 31 while Kyle Mills took two for 32.

The second Twenty20 match, and the final match of the Zimbabwe tour, will be played in Hamilton on Tuesday.

Friday 10 February 2012


SHARJAH, United Arab Emirates: Pakistan beat Afghanistan by seven wickets in the first-ever one-day international between the two countries at Sharjah Stadium here on Friday.

Leg-spinner Shahid Afridi took 5-36 to restrict Afghanistan to 195 before Pakistan romped home in the 38th over with Younis Khan hitting an unbeaten 70 and Imran Farhat scoring 52.

For Afghanistan, Karim Sadiq top-scored with 40 while Mohammad Nabi (37) and Samiullah Shinwari (32) also contributed

Friday 10 February 2012

SHARJAH: Leg-spinner Shahid Afridi took his eighth five-wicket haul in one-day cricket but Afghanistan still managed 195 in their first-ever day-night international at Sharjah Stadium here on Friday.

The 31-year-old leg-spinner took four wickets in his first spell to derail Afghanistan -- who won the toss and batted -- from 54-1 to 101-5 before finishing with 5-36 in his 10 overs.

Afridi also became the second spinner with the highest one-day wickets (338) behind Muttiah Muralitharan (534), surpassing India's Anil Kumble who had 333 wickets.

But despite Afridi's brilliance, the Afghan batsmen put up an excellent show and had they not lacked experience -- playing their first one-day international against a top nation -- they would have scored more.

There was plenty of fireworks on and off the field as Afghan batsmen hit six sixes during their innings which delighted the bumper 15,000-strong weekend crowd -- mostly Pakistan and Afghan expats.

Paceman Umar Gul provided Pakistan with the early breakthrough when he caught Noor Ali (nine) off his own bowling before Afridi dismissed Mohammad Shahzad (20), Nawroz Mangal (11), Gulbadin Naib (seven) and Karim Sadiq (40) in his first spell.

Sadiq hit two boundaries and two sixes during his aggressive 47-ball knock.

Mohammad Nabi, who scored 37 with two sixes, added 46 for the sixth wicket with Samiullah Shinwari who finished with 32 studded with four boundaries.

Gul and Wahab Riaz took two wickets each

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