Afghanistan and Pakistan in Sri Lanka, 3 ODI Series, 2023 |1st ODI |8/22/2023 Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium, Hambantota
That is it from this game. We might have not seen runs but classic bowling performances from both teams. A good start to the series by Pakistan. The second match is on the 24th of this month at 3 pm IST (9.30 am GMT). Join us early for the coverage. Cheers!
Babar Azam says they were looking for a score around 250 but they were not up to the mark with the bat. Reckons it was still a good total with the quality bowling they have, they were looking for early wickets. Mentions Afridi and Shah started well and then Haris Rauf changed the game completely. States he learns from his mistake and tries his best in every game to score.
Hashmatullah Shahidi says it was a chaseable score but Pakistan bowled really well. Adds their shot-selection wasn't good which gave the opposition to get in the game. Reckons he is happy with the bowling performance and it is a positive thing from this game. States they have to be smart with the bat in the next game.
Haris Rauf is the Player of the Match. He says he is feeling good with the win. Adds it was a low scoring game but as a team, they have the belief to defend the score. Shares the wicket demanding some hard-length delivery and he got the wickets. Reckons Afridi and Shah started really well which gave him the confidence.
Pakistan opted to bat first on this sluggish wicket. They wanted to test themselves and in the process, lost flurry many wickets. Imam-ul-Haq played well to hold the innings from one end and in the fag end got able support from Shadab Khan to push Pakistan just over 200. Afghanistan bowled really well, their fielding was okayish but were very confident to chase it down. However, it turned to be more than enough for Pakistan as Afghanistan were bowled out with more than 30 overs to spare.
At the innings break, the Afghan players were pumped with their bowling performance. They kept Pakistan to a par total and were gearing up to chase this total comfortably, however, they were facing the trio of Afridi, Naseem Shah and Rauf who took 8 wickets together. Afghanistan lost half of their side inside the 14th over. And within the next 5 overs, they were all out. A very disappointing show from Afghanistan as no one showed up for the chase.
An absolutely magical performance from Pakistan. Afghanistan have been handed their second lowest score. One thing is for sure, even if the pitch might support the spinners, these Pakistani pacers with their consistent will make the day hard for any batting line-up. Haris Rauf is the star today. Started with a wicket on his first delivery, followed it by two maidens and eventually takes the ball home as he ends with a five-fer.
Azmatullah Omarzai has not recovered from the injury suffered and won't be able to participate any more with the bat. As it stands, Azmatullah Omarzai is retired out.
Haris Rauf to Mujeeb Ur Rahman, OUT! CAUGHT! Haris Rauf picks up his fi-fer and gets an end to this Afghanistan innings. It is a short ball, on off. Mujeeb Ur Rahman tries to heave it across the line but does not time it well. The ball catches the outside edge and flies towards mid on. Naseem Shah settles under it and takes an easy catch.
Haris Rauf to Mujeeb Ur Rahman, FOUR! Nicely played. Mujeeb Ur Rahman opens his account. It is very full, on off. Mujeeb Ur Rahman stands tall and smashes this downtown for a cracking boundary.
END OF OVER 19 | 0 Runs & 1 Wkt | AFG 55/8
Shadab Khan to Fazalhaq Farooqi, Outside off, left alone.
Who will walk out now? It is Fazalhaq Farooqi. Also, the final batter at the crease, as Azmatullah Omarzai got retired hurt earlier.
Shadab Khan to Abdul Rahman, OUT! CAUGHT! Shadab Khan strikes in his very first over. Afghanistan lose their eighth wicket inside 20 overs. A day to forget with the bat for them. It is tossed up, full and on off. Abdul Rahman gets low and goes for the slog sweep. The ball catches the top-edge and goes high in the air. It goes straight up and Fakhar Zaman takes a solid catch at mid-wicket.
Shadab Khan to Abdul Rahman, Abdul Rahman tries to flick this full ball into mid-wicket but it goes into covers off the leading edge.
Shadab Khan to Abdul Rahman, A googly around off. Rahman gets it off the inner half.
Shadab Khan to Abdul Rahman, Goes full, on off. Rahman defends it on his front foot.
Shadab Khan to Abdul Rahman, On off, blocked.
END OF OVER 18 | 1 Runs & 0 Wkt | AFG 55/7
Haris Rauf to Mujeeb Ur Rahman, An appeal for caught behind but turned down! It is a length ball, that is drifted in and holds its line after hitting the deck. Mujeeb Ur Rahman tries to slap it through the line but misses. The ball goes past the outside edge. Mohammad Rizwan thinks that he has nicked it and convinces the skipper to take the review, but the UltraEdge confirms that no bat is involved.
Haris Rauf to Abdul Rahman, Back of a length, outside off. Rahman taps it to point for one.
Haris Rauf to Abdul Rahman, Back of a length, on off. Rahman goes for the pull shot. It flies off the top-edge, but does not carry to the man at fine leg.
Haris Rauf to Abdul Rahman, Around off, blocked.
Haris Rauf to Abdul Rahman, Two dots in a row start the 6th over! It is fuller, in the channel. Rahman catches the outside edge as he tries to defend it out, as it is played with soft hands, the ball does not carry.