• Tuesday, Jun 22, 2021
  • Last Update : 02:56 am

Gurbaz stars in Afghanistan's T20 win over Zimbabwe

  • Published at 11:49 am March 18th, 2021
Afghanistan's Rashid Khan bowls during their first T20 against Zimbabwe in Abu Dhabi Wednesday ACB

The second match is Friday and the third Saturday, both also in Abu Dhabi

Opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz smashed a fiery half century to anchor Afghanistan's convincing 48-run win over Zimbabwe in the first Twenty20 in Abu Dhabi Wednesday.

The dashing right-hander cracked seven towering sixes and six boundaries in his dominating 45-ball 87 to steer Afghanistan to an imperious 198/5 in 20 overs after they won the toss and batted at Sheikh Zayed Stadium.

Ace spinner Rashid Khan (3/28), Karim Janat (2/14) and Fareed Ahmad (2/31) then restricted Zimbabwe to 150/7 in their 20 overs to give Afghanistan a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

The second match is Friday and the third Saturday, both also in Abu Dhabi.

It was Gurbaz who gave the cavalier Afghanistan the robust start of 80 in just eight overs and continued after Janat (26) fell, adding another 74 for the second wicket with skipper Asghar Afghan who made a 38-ball 55.

Asghar hit six boundaries and two sixes.

22-year-old Rashid, who had taken 11 wickets against Bangladesh in 2019, picked up 7-137 in the second innings against Zimbabwe for a match haul of 11-325

Posted by Sports Tribune on Sunday, 14 March 2021

Gurbaz holed out to leg-spinner Ryan Burl while Asghar fell to pacer Blessing Muzarabani in the final over as Afghanistan added 42 in the last five overs.

Muzarabani was the pick of Zimbabwe bowlers with 2/38 while Richard Ngarava took 2/43.

Asghar hailed the team's spirit.

Zimbabwe were also off the track rapidly, putting 38 by 4.5 overs but then lost wickets at regular intervals to lose the momentum required for the big chase.

Opener Tinashe Kamunhukamwe scored a quick 37-ball 44 with four boundaries while Sikandar Raza and skipper Sean Williams made 22 each which were not enough.

This becomes Afghanistan's ninth win in 10 T20s against Zimbabwe, with just one defeat.

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