Afghanistan Advances to T20 WC Semi-Finals


Afghanistan secured their place in the semi-finals of the ongoing T20 World Cup 2024 after defeating Bangladesh by eight runs in the Super Eights match at the Arnos Vale Ground on Tuesday.

Rashid Khan and Naveen-ul-Haq spearheaded the Afghan bowling attack, successfully defending a revised target of 114 runs in 19 overs due to a rain interruption. The original target was 115.

As a result of this defeat, Mitchell Marsh-led Australia has been eliminated from the tournament, finishing third in Group 1 of the Super Eights with just two points.

Litton Das was the standout batter for Bangladesh, scoring an unbeaten 54 runs off 49 balls, including five fours and one six. Despite his efforts, his teammates struggled against the relentless Afghan bowlers. Soumya Sarkar (10 off 10 balls) and Towhid Hridoy (14 off 9 balls) tried to form partnerships with Litton but failed to withstand the Afghan attack.

Naveen-ul-Haq and Rashid Khan each claimed four wickets, while Fazalhaq Farooqi and Gulbadin Naib took one wicket apiece, leading Afghanistan to an eight-run victory. Naveen-ul-Haq sealed the match by removing Mustafizur Rahman in the 18th over and was named the ‘Player of the Match’ for his exceptional performance.

In the first innings, after winning the toss, Afghanistan opted to bat. Openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz (43 off 55 balls) and Ibrahim Zadran (18 off 29 balls) provided a solid start with a 59-run partnership. However, Bangladesh’s bowlers managed to control the run rate and took crucial wickets.

Rishad Hossain broke the partnership by dismissing Zadran in the 11th over and later took the wicket of Gurbaz, who fell just seven runs short of his half-century. Despite a few contributions from other players, Afghanistan struggled to accelerate their scoring.

Captain Rashid Khan (19* off 10 balls) and Karim Janat (7 off 6 balls) managed to push the total to 115/5 in 20 overs. Rishad Hossain was the leading bowler for Bangladesh, taking three wickets for 26 runs, while Mustafizur Rahman and Taskin Ahmed each claimed one wicket.

Brief score: Afghanistan 115/5 (Rahmanullah Gurbaz 43, Rashid Khan 19*, Ibrahim Zadran 18; Rishad Hossain 3/26) defeated Bangladesh 105 (Litton Das 54*, Towhid Hridoy 14, Soumya Sarkar 10; Rashid Khan 4/23).

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