T20 World Cup 2021: Twitter Erupts As Pakistan Defeat Afghanistan By 5 Wickets To Make Three Wins In Three Games

Pakistan defeated Afghanistan by 5 wickets in Dubai on Friday and have all but confirmed a semi-final spot with a total of 3 wins now in 3 matches.

Chasing 148, Pakistan were rocked early on by Mujeeb Ur Rahman as Mohammad Rizwan found the deep square leg fielder. Fakhar Zaman, though, whacked Mohammad Nabi for a six and a four to clear his intentions. Pakistan ended the powerplay at 38/1.

Babar Azam and Fakhar Zaman kept the required rate under 8, scoring 34 runs in the next four overs before Rashid Khan’s introduction.

While Babar held his end, he lost two partners in quick time at the other: Zaman was trapped lbw by Nabi before Rashid Khan struck with the wicket of Mohammad Hafeez as the required rate quickly climbed over 9.

Shoaib Malik launched Rashid for a maximum but the leg-spinner retaliated with the wicket of Babarm, as the Pakistani captain missed his slog with the ball sneaking through to hit the stumps. Naveen-ul-Haq then dismissed Malik putting Afghanistan well in the hunt, with Pakistan needing 24 from the last two overs.

Asif Ali (Image Credit: Twitter)

Asif Ali, the hero versus New Zealand, became the hero again, thumping Karim Janat for four sixes in the 19th over to finish the chase.

Earlier, after electing to bat first, Afghanistan lost both the openers early on: Hazratullah Zazai mistimed his slog off Imad Wasim and Mohammad Shahzad lobbed a simple catch to Babar Azam off Shaheen Afridi.

Asghar Afghan and Rahmanullah Gurbaz counterattacked, taking 17 runs off Imad Wasim before both got out inside the powerplay: Afghan returned a catch back to pacer Haris Rauf and Rahmanullah Gurbaz was caught at wide mid-on off Hasan Ali. A couple of lusty blows from Karim Janat helped his side to 49/4 at the end of the powerplay.

As a partnership was building up between Janat and Najibullah Zadran, Imad returned to break it with the former’s wicket before Shadab Khan accounted for Najibullah, leaving Afghanistan reeling at 79/6 at the 13 over mark.

Imad Wasim
Imad Wasim (Image Credit: Twitter)

However, from thereon, not only Afghanistan didn’t lose any wicket further, but they also managed to post a competitive total as senior pros Gulbadin Naib and skipper Mohammad Nabi joined hands for a 71-run stand off 45 balls.

Both of them rotated the strike, with the occasional boundary, stopping the wicket-flow before tearing into the Hasan Ali in the 18th over: Naib smashed Ali for 6, 4, 2, 2, 4 to provide the impetus going deep in the innings as both the right-handers took 15 runs from the 19th over, bowled by Rauf. Shaheen Afridi mitigated the damage a bit with a brilliant 7-run last over as Afghanistan posted 174.

Twitter Erupts As Pakistan Defeat Afghanistan By 5 Wickets To Make Three Wins In Three Games:

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