Asia Cup 2022: We did not bowl well in end, says Afghanistan captain Mohammad Nabi after team’s debacle against Pakistan

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Asia Cup 2022: We did not bowl well in end, says Afghanistan captain Mohammad Nabi after team's debacle against Pakistan
Asia Cup 2022: We did not bowl well in end, says Afghanistan captain Mohammad Nabi after team's debacle against Pakistan

Asia Cup 2022: We did not bowl well in end, says Afghanistan captain Mohammad Nabi after team’s debacle against Pakistan

Asia Cup 2022: After suffering a one-wicket defeat in the thrilling last over of the Super Four stage of the ongoing Asia Cup against Pakistan, Afghanistan captain Mohammad Nabi said that his side did not bowl well at the end of the innings.

Team India is no longer in the running for the championship after Pakistan defeated Afghanistan by one wicket in a thrilling Super Four match on Wednesday. Naseem Shah’s two back-to-back sixes in the first two balls of the final over overcame some outstanding bowling by Afghanistan earlier in the innings. Despite scoring only 129/6 on the board, Afghanistan would be quite satisfied with the outstanding bowling of Fazalhaq Farooqi (3/31) and Fareed Ahmad Malik (3/31). They nearly gave their team a victory, but Naseem’s two sixes in the final over gave Pakistan the victory.

For Pakistan, Iftikhar Ahmed (30) and Shadab Khan (36) made noteworthy contributions. There will be a final between Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

“With Pakistan, it is always an exciting match. We did not bowl well in the end. We played good cricket and gave the opposition a tough time always. Also we started really well but in the last two games, we did not bowl well, ” Nabi said in the post-match conference.

“Look Fazalhaq Farooqi is our main bowler. He bowled the 18th over and took two wickets. He bowled brilliantly. Our plan was to bowl perfect Yorkers. We actually put two options for him to bowl Yorkers or slow bouncers,” he added.

“It was not the batting pitch. On proper batting pitches, you score 180 or 190 and maybe more, but on this pitch, it was not possible. Scoring a low total is tough to defend. We played good cricket and gave the opposition a tough time always. We started really well but in the last two games, we played really well too,” the Afghanistan captain added.

Pakistan secured a position in the final with Sri Lanka with its victory over Afghanistan in the Super Four stage, eliminating India from contention.

“Nobody expected India to lose as they are a good team and we have also played well in Sharjah,” said Nabi.

In the penultimate over of the game, Afghanistan seamer Fareed Ahmed had a few choice words for Pakistan batter Asif Ali before he was dismissed.

Talking about the clash between Asif Ali and Fareed Ahmed, Nabi said, “I was not in the boundary. I don’t know what was happening in the middle between Farheed and Asif. Naseem Shah yes sometimes he can hit the bowl. It was Naseem Shah’s day.”

Coming to the match, despite scoring only 129/6 on the board, Afghanistan would be overjoyed with the outstanding bowling of Fazalhaq Farooqi (3/31) and Fareed Ahmad Malik (3/31). They nearly gave their team a victory, but Naseem’s two sixes in the final over gave Pakistan the victory. Shadab Khan (36) and Iftikhar Ahmed (30) made significant contributions for Pakistan. There will be a final between Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

Pakistan, who was attempting to reach 130, got off to a bad start when its captain, Babar Azam, was lost for a golden duck. Azam’s terrible performance in the competition persisted, and he made history by becoming the first captain in Asia Cup history to have a registered golden duck.

Soon after, Pakistan lost another wicket when left-hander Fakhar Zaman was run out by Najibullah Zadran for 5, dropping them to 18/2.

Following this, Pakistani batsmen Mohammed Rizwan and Iftikhar Ahmed rebuilt their team’s innings while maintaining the scoreboard’s momentum. Pakistan had Iftikhar Ahmed (13*) and Mohammad Rizwan (15*) at 35/2 after six overs.

By trapping Rizwan lbw for 20 points off of 26 balls, Rashid Khan gave Afghanistan their third wicket of the game and his first of the game. At 45/3, Pakistan was in serious trouble. Shadab Khan joined him on the crease as Ifthikhar Ahmed continued. Pakistan was at 52/3 after 10 over, with Shadab (6*) and Iftikhar (19*).

As they continued to bat, Shadab and Iftikhar displayed responsible cricket by hitting mishit balls over the fence. Pakistan was reinstated into the competition by them.

Pakistan was at 85/3 after 15 over, with both batsman scoring 29*.

A 42-run partnership between the two came to an end when Iftikhar was removed for 30 off 32 pitches. Ibrahim Zadran was caught at deep midwicket by Fareed Ahmad, who then took the wicket. Pakistan had 87/4 in 15.3 overs at this point.

Mohammad Nawaz, an all-arounder, entered the field next. Pakistan needed 39 runs as the final four overs began.

After striking a stunning six to begin the following Rashid over, Shadab caught by Azmatullah and removed by Rashid for 36 runs off 26 balls. At 97 runs, half of the Pakistani team had returned to the hut. Nawaz’s replacement at bat, Asif Ali, began his inning with a six. At this moment, Pakistan needed 25 off the remaining three overs.

By catching Nawaz leg before wicket for four points off of five balls, Fazalhaq Farooqi helped Afghanistan maintain their outstanding comeback in the game. Pakistan’s score was 105-6. With his excellent bowling, Farooqi kept up the pressure on Pakistan, removing the stumps of new batsman Khusdil Shah with the last ball of the over. Pakistan needed 21 runs from the final two overs after 18 overs had bowled.

The Pakistan team then sent out Haris Rauf. However, Fareed Ahmad clean bowled him for a duck to claim his second wicket of the game.

Asif, who was out of partners at the other end, was the next to join. Naseem Shah. After the dangerman, Asif Ali, caught by Karim Janat for 16 off 8 balls, Fareed Ahmad secured his third wicket of the game.

With Pakistan needing 11 runs in the last over, Mohammad Hasnain was the last Pakistani player to arrive at the crease.

With a stunning six to start the next over, Naseem Shah cut the required runs to five off five balls. He also struck the following ball, a full toss, for a six, giving his nation a one-wicket victory.

Farooqi was Afghanistan’s leading bowler with 3/25. Additionally, Fareed Ahmad Malik took a great 3/31. As well, Rashid Khan claimed two wickets.

In the earlier Super Four match at the ongoing Asia Cup 2022 in Sharjah on Wednesday, Afghanistan held to a pitiful 129/6 in their 20 overs thanks to some outstanding bowling by the Pakistan team.

Pakistan played well with the ball because they prevented the formation of any significant partnerships.

Hazratullah Zazai and Rahmanullah Gurbaz of Afghanistan got their team off to a strong start when Pakistan sent them in to bat first. Both batters had an aggressive stance appropriate for the powerplay. In the second over, Gurbaz struck bowler Mohammad Hasnain for two consecutive sixes.

Pakistan’s first success was thanks to the pacer Haris Rauf. Gurbaz, who was a threat, was caught for 17 off 11 balls by him. Before Gurbaz could slog the ball, his off-stump was knocked out of place.

The next player on the crease was Ibrahim Zadran. Hasnain quickly dismissed Hazratullah Zazai for 21 off 17 balls. Hasnain took away his leg-stump despite the fact that he had hit four good boundaries and appeared fantastic. Before the powerplay, Afghanistan lost their second wicket with a score of 43 runs.

The player after Karim Janat was on the crease. With Zadran (5*) and Janat (2*), Afghanistan had 48/2 at the end of the power play in six overs. Afghanistan faced the difficulty of finishing the first half of their innings with a respectable score after two early wickets reduced their run flow.

Janat and Zadran supported their team in doing precisely that by maintaining the scoreboard with a few singles and boundaries. With Janat (15*) and Zadran (16*), Afghanistan had scored 72/2 in the allotted 10 overs.

At 35 runs, a promising stand came to an abrupt end when Janat attempted a big hit over long-on but caught by Fakhar Zaman. Mohammad Nawaz, a spinner, took his maiden wicket as Janat returned to the pavilion for 15 from 19 balls. Afghanistan was currently 78/3.

The other Zadran followed by Najibullah Zadran. In the 14th over, Najibullah attempted to dominate the spinner Shadab Khan with a six, but the bowler ultimately triumphed, forcing the batter to walk back for 10 from 11 balls after Fakhar collected another catch.

The very next ball resulted in the dismissal of the captain, Mohammad Nabi. First wicket of the game for pacer Naseem Shah. The ball made contact with the inside edge of his bat before striking his stumps. By 91/5, half of Afghanistan had returned to the tent.

With Zadran (26*) and Omarzai (1*), Afghanistan had 93/5 after 15 overs.

Ibrahim joined by Azmatullah Omarzai in the chase. Ibrahim’s six enabled Afghanistan to reach 100 runs in 15.3 overs.

As the game entered the last overs, Zadran appeared to be crucial to Afghanistan’s chances, but he dismissed for 35 from 37 balls by Rauf after caught behind by Mohammad Rizwan.

The next person to the crease was Rashid Khan. Afghanistan’s hitters came under increasing pressure from Pakistan, who also did not provide them with many opportunities to score runs. With a four and a six in the penultimate over, Rashid Khan did relieve some strain, but Afghanistan still finished with a below-par total of 129/6 in their 20 overs. Azmatullah Omarzai completed his cameo with 10*, then Rashid Khan played a strong cameo of 18* off 15 balls.

The most effective bowler for Pakistan was the pacer Haris Rauf, who had a four-over burst of 2/26. For Pakistan, Naseem Shah, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Nawaz, and Shadab Khan each claimed one wicket.